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I'm not sure if this is a question for this SA site or if it should be on Interpersonal Skills SA. I live on a dead end rural road, that is about two miles long. A neighbor kid, who lives about 3/4 of a mile from me, and I are training a team of oxen. We walk them on their leads along the road a couple of time a week. There are no houses between my house and the neighbor's. Since only one or two vehicles go by during our walk, often none, we can hear any vehicles from about half a mile away. When we hear a vehicle approaching, we get the team as close to the side of the road as possible, and hold them still. There is no shoulder, one side of the road goes up a hill and the other side down a steep bank to a creek, about 50 feet below road level. Most of the drivers slow down, smile and wave, but there is one driver who, when he sees us, guns his motor, races straight toward us, and swerves at the last minute, passing within two feet of us at 45-50 mph. He drives a big, double cab diesel pick-up. We can hear him coming, and can tell that he changes how he drives as soon as he sees us, speeding up and heading straight for us. The speed limit is not posted, but is technically 50 mph, although no part of the road is appropriate for that speed. Most drivers go about 30-35 mph. I don't know the driver, since he's never stopped to talk. My question is what can be done about this rude, dangerous, intimidating driving, short of not using the road for walking. It is zoned agricultural. This is in the United States, in Oregon. Is what he's doing perfectly legal, or would this be considered reckless endangerment? Or considered some other infraction? The cops around here are unlikely to be any help at all. It's a big county and they are understaffed. He does the same if I am walking by myself, or with my dog. When I walk the dog, I get as close to the edge of the road as possible, stop, and hold the dog's collar when any vehicle drives by. The kid says he does the same thing as she is walking to or from my house.

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...there is one driver who, when he sees us, guns his motor, races straight toward us, and swerves at the last minute, passing within two feet of us at 45-50 mph.

I think this can be construed as Reckless Driving ORS 811.140 - Reckless driving - 2015 Oregon Revised Statutes, and possibly also as intimidation or negligence under other Oregon statutes.

It sounds like you are in a county rather than a city - which would have a police department having direct jurisdiction - as opposed to a sheriff's department.

If you don't want to call the county Sheriff's Department, as you say they are overworked (or may not help), you can try documenting the incidents in conjunction with your neighbor. This will give you documentation to prevent a "he said, she said" situation with the driver and the district attorney and sheriff's department.

This is really a combination legal and law enforcement situation: you need to bring your own evidence to the attorney, as the sheriff's department isn't going to be able to patrol in hopes of seeing one of these incidents themselves.

Get a smart phone or small video camera and tape one or more of these incidents. Start a log of the dates and times this has happened, from now on and in the past. Write down the license number. Write down a physical description of the driver. Don't threaten or retaliate against the driver in any way, even if they confront you about taping. (If they do confront you or the neighbor, call the sheriff's department right away).

Call the county or district attorney for your county and show the tape and log to him/her. Hopefully they will instruct the Sheriff's Department to have a word with driver or ticket him; or possibly they may prosecute the driver themselves. Since you are in a rural area, chances are good the attorney and sheriff's department already know the individual.

If the neighbor "kid" is a minor, talk to their parents about what is happening, and do the videotaping and documentation yourself.

If the district attorney doesn't want to do anything, talk to the Oregon District Attorneys Association (ODAA) about the situation and that you feel the attorney should be prosecuting the driver. That's a voluntary association of the 36 district attorneys, but they can help if your local attorney is not helpful or reticent in dealing with the situation.

  • Great answer. May I ask about "If the neighbor "kid" is a minor, talk to their parents about what is happening, and do the videotaping and documentation yourself." Why is a minor videotaping and documenting an issue? – sharur Oct 26 '17 at 20:06
  • It isn't necessarily; but it could be a legal or ethical issue if one adult is supervising someone else's minor. – BlueDogRanch Oct 26 '17 at 20:57
  • Thank you for your thoughtful answer. Yes, the "kid" is a minor. Her mother knows about the driver, and even mentioned him to the sheriff when he was in the neighborhood on an unrelated incident. That's when we learned that the speed limit is 50. The sheriff was quite rude about it, explaining how busy he was. That's why I didn't think I'd get any help there. I will try to video the incidents, and will start a log. I can't get a description of the driver because the truck has tinted windows. I never got his plate # because I am always holding the dog, or the steers, but next time I will. – Tad Jones Oct 27 '17 at 2:22
  • Also, if the district attorney seems reticent about doing anything, you could try the county commissioners; they will be concerned with safety issues and speed limits and will be able to task the sheriff with enforcement. – BlueDogRanch Oct 30 '17 at 5:01

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