Richard Quigley Passes Away

Richard Quigley, who made a name for himself fighting the mandatory helmet law in California, passed away today after a long battle with lym...

Richard Quigley, who made a name for himself fighting the mandatory helmet law in California, passed away today after a long battle with lymphoma. He was 63 years old.

Over the past several years, newspapers around California reported on his success in getting a string of helmet tickets overturned or declared unconstitutional. He later advanced his efforts into the creation of a motorcycle rights organization called, California BOLT (Bikers of Lesser Tolerance).

In 1999, he decided to start riding his motorcycle wearing a trucker's cap, instead of the typical head gear other riders tend to wear. Between the years 1999 to 2006, he had been stopped over a 100 times by police, cited only 34 times for helmet law violations, and managed to get 25 of those citations dismissed or declared unconstitutional.

Each time he was stopped, he turned on his pocket tape recorder and then proceeded to interrogate the officer's understanding of the helmet law and what a "DOT Helmet" actually is. His intricate knowledge of the helmet law and how the DOT is involved with helmets, along with these tape recordings, is how he managed to get so many tickets overturned.

In August 2005, Quigley's lymphoma was diagnosed as terminal. A few months later, a "living" wake was held in his honor where 200 bikers showed up. Among those also showing up was a police officer that had written a couple tickets to him, who wanted to pay his respects and shake his hand.

Such respect has grown over time and today Quigley is viewed by many riders in California as a folk hero, a guy who took a stand against intrusive laws, and led a fight for freedom. He's viewed by some as having done more for the fight against helmet laws than anyone else.

Quigley's legacy continues on through California BOLT. The organization's website still publishes a wealth of information, mostly court transcripts, explaining how he was able to defeat helmet tickets, and how the helmet law cannot be constitutionally enforced.

Visit California BOLT online at...
http://www.usff.com/calbolt/

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