A Moody man was charged with criminal mischief and damage of private property early on Monday after allegedly running over another man’s bicycle following an altercation on Kelly Creek Road.
Ronald Levi Hughes, 50, was arrested by Moody police officers and has since been released on bail.
Max Mioducki, 26, was in the early stages of a cross-country bike trip from Savannah, Georgia, to San Francisco when the incident occurred. He had been primarily traveling on bike trails but had to travel from Anniston to Mountain Brook by way of Highway 78 and Highway 174, Mioducki said over the phone.
By his account, Mioducki said he was on Kelly Creek Road, when a man in an Ford Explorer began honking at him. “He got up right behind me even though I was waving at him to go around. When he finally did [pass] he got about as close to me as he could,” Mioducki said. “He was cussing me out. Just yelling a bunch of nasty things.”
Following that incident, Mioducki said, Hughes pulled into the Sunoco service station on Kelly Creek Road. “I decided I needed to tell him that the law says he has to give me three feet whether he likes it or not,” Mioducki said. “I pulled into the gas station and told him about the three feet and words were exchanged. They weren’t very nice, let’s say that.
“He started digging around in his pocket and I said something like, ‘What are you going to do? Stab me?’ and he said, ‘It’s going to be much worse than that.’”
According to the police report, Hughes admitted that he had a knife, although he denied showing it to Mioducki. The police officer who wrote the report didn’t seem to believe that. “His assertion does not appear to be accurate, however, because in Mioducki’s account of the events, Hughes had a knife, which was not information that was ever shared with him prior to his explanation of the events,” the officer wrote.
The police report and Mioducki pointed out that the cyclist spit at the Explorer. “Mioducki admitted that he did spit at Hughes’ tail light as he remarked that his tail light was out,” the report said. But Mioducki disputed Hughes’ assertion that he also kicked the SUV.
After that, Mioducki said he got on his bike and continued his ride. Hughes began to follow him down the road until Mioducki said he pulled into a Love’s Travel Center. Unaware that Hughes had also pulled into the gas station, Mioducki went inside to make a phone call. It was then he realized Hughes had pulled into the parking lot as well and had “[started] doing doughnuts,” Mioducki said.
“He has a knife and he’s holding it up. He never got out of the car, but he starts revving his engine like he was going to do something. He tried to hop the curb — my bike was on the grass — but couldn’t get it. He tried again and got over the curb. That’s when he just ran my bike over.”
According to Mioducki, throughout the altercation, he was exchanging words with the man, and the commotion drew a crowd of bystanders from a nearby McDonald’s coming to watch.
After Hughes ran over the bike, he attempted to reverse back onto the pavement but could not because the bike was lodged underneath the car, according to the police report. Mioducki said that at this point, he was on the phone with police and attempting to take pictures of the incident for the record.
Two independent statements were taken that support Mioducki’s account, according to the police report.
Mioducki’s bike is ruined, he said — the frame and handlebars are both badly bent — putting his plans for the cross-country trip on hold as he tries to find money to fix the bike. His girlfriend is in the process of moving to Birmingham and he had planned on staying in the city for a brief rest before setting off on the next leg of his trip. His mom is in the process of starting a GoFundMe page to help with repairs, he said.
“When I told my family and friends this is what I wanted to do they all thought I was crazy,” Mioducki said. “But at the same time they supported me because they knew this is what I really wanted to do. I wanted to make memories and it was one of those things where I knew if I was going to make the trip, this was the time to do it.”
Mioducki had saved up and bought a high-end Fuji bicycle that be believed could make the trip. He had it loaded down with camping gear, clothes and his necessities, four bags in total. Only one bag was recovered after the accident. Mioducki is still determined to make the trip despite the setback.
“I just broke down after everything happened, right there in the parking lot. I had worked so hard for all of this and it’s still kind of surreal,” Mioducki said.
The Moody Police Department did not comment on the investigation.