Andy Hulslander was father of two who proposed at a velodrome + His alleged killer pleads not guilty

Lucas McQuinn, 29, pleaded not guilty to Vehicular Homicide Wednesday morning, three weeks after he allegedly drove under the influence and killed Andy Hulslander.

Andy, a father of two, was biking home to Lake Forest Park from his job in Wallingford when McQuinn allegedly plowed into him from behind at a red light in the Ravenna neighborhood. Andy died very shortly after the impact.

Andy and his duaghters take a break during a family bike ride. Photo from his online obituary.

Andy and his daughters take a break during a family bike ride. Photo from his online obituary.

Andy was born in Birmingham, Alabama, and lived in Lindenhurst, New York, and Reading, Pennsylvania, before moving to Seattle.

“Andy moved to Seattle in 1993, participating in top-level track cycling racing there while working his way up to managing stores for Bicycles West,” according to his obituary. “Andy was a very successful Cat II cyclist with Team Wheelsport on both road and track.

“He first met Dana Tiedemann, of Penfield NY, and later proposed to her, at Marymoor Velodrome in Redmond, WA.”

His two daughters are six and nine years old, and it’s clear from his obituary and the heartbreaking photo gallery posted there that he was a dedicated father.

Our deepest condolences to his friends and family.

For anyone looking for a way to contribute in his memory:

In lieu of flowers, contributions in memory of Andy may be made to the raptor program at the Woodland Park Zoo, www.zoo.org/mobile-donation or the Forgotten Children’s Fund for which he built bikes, www.forgottenchildrensfund.org

Memorial donations are being accepted for college funds for Leah and Kate at Chase Bank. Please make your check out to (just use the account number as the payee and not the girls’ names):
For Leah: Acct. # 3025490565
For Kate: Acct. # 3025490557

How it happened

Andy’s body was found 30 yards from where he had been waiting for the light to turn green.

It was dark at 11 p.m. when he got to the traffic signal eastbound on NE 65th Street at 15th Ave NE, but he had a blinking red light on the back of his bike and was even wearing a “brightly-colored cycling jersey,” according to investigators. That’s far more than the red rear reflector required by law.

But it doesn’t matter how much safety equipment you have when someone driving far too fast and “really, really drunk” — as one witness put it — plows into the back of you. Witnesses estimated that McQuinn was driving somewhere between 40 and 50 mph, though investigators were still working to reconstruct the collision and determine the exact speed at the time charges were filed. The speed limit is 30 mph.

A Seattle Police officer conducted field sobriety tests on McQuinn and determined he was intoxicated. He refused to take a breathalyzer, though blood was drawn a few hours later at the station (test results were still pending at the time of the charges).

“The proximate cause of this collision appeared to be McQuinn’s inability to avoid a collision with a conspicuous bicyclist, moving in the same direction and occupying the same lane of travel,” according to the charging document. “McQuinn’s inability to safely operate a motor vehicle was likely a combination of alcohol impairment and excessive speed.”

He pleaded not guilty to Vehicular Homicide and is currently free on $100,000 bond. He has waived his right to a speedy trial (which is common for such a serious charge). The court date to set the schedule for his trail is August 13. As a condition of his release, he cannot drink or possess alcohol, go to an establishment that primarily sells alcohol or drive a vehicle without an ignition interlock. He also must wear a transdermal alcohol monitoring device.

Plans to improve safety on NE 65th Street have been controversial in recent years. Stay tuned for more in a follow-up story tomorrow.

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17 Responses to Andy Hulslander was father of two who proposed at a velodrome + His alleged killer pleads not guilty

  1. ronp says:

    I am so sorry for the family.

    The area around Roosevelt High School really needs safety improvements. Certain city council candidates could be brave and speak up about slowing traffic down in that area. It does not need to be treated as a cross town free way, especially as the light rail station will open in a few years and create even more pedestrian and bike traffic.

    Businesses should embrace safer streets even with the possible loss of parking spaces.

    What is the deal with drinking and driving in this country? We have taxi’s and Uber and Lyft, buses, etc. We need a local drunk driving ordinance that has real punitive effects. And laws like Sweden – http://blogs.wsj.com/drivers-seat/2012/04/04/think-drunk-driving-rules-are-tough-here-try-sweden/

  2. Harrison Davignon says:

    I feel really sorry for his family, especially those poor kids, who lost there dad at a age were they understand death and tragic loss and no father to grow up with. I would say every time someone drinks and drives, the first time they are forced go alcoholics anonymous, second time $ 5,000 dollar fine and drivers licence taken revoked for the rest of there life and third time, jail for life. This why we need physical barriers between vehicles and bicycles were we can, such as a concrete wall. I wish his family and children the best of luck. It is time to start respecting people who can’t drive or don’t want to.

  3. jay says:

    ” or drive a vehicle without an ignition interlock.”

    WTF! I understand that he can’t be locked up for 20 years without due process, but a drivers licenses is a privilege, not a basic human right (such as, for example; life)

    The state drivers guide (which is just a guide, not the actual law) says:
    “If a police or traffic officer asks you to take a BAC test, you must do so. You will lose your driver license for at least one year if you refuse to take a BAC test.”

    Note “will”, not “may”, but again, just the drivers guide, not the actual law.

    The guide also says (but again, just a guide, not a medical textbook);
    “It takes about one hour for your body to get rid of each drink.”

    The blood draw was a few hours later? I bet this guy is going to walk. On the other hand, driving a 13 year old car and living with his parents, he probably won’t be hiring F. Lee Bailey, also there would be little reason to keep him out of prison so that that he can pay restitution, since he probably couldn’t anyway, so who knows.

    • Andres Salomon says:

      Seriously, WTF. How does he still get to drive? I really hate car dependency culture.

    • Zach says:

      Yeah, holy shit he still gets to drive?!?!

      • Matthew Snyder says:

        Refusing a breathalyzer test is a violation of the state’s Implied Consent law and will eventually result in Lucas McQuinn losing his driver’s license for at least a year. I’m not a lawyer, but I assume this will happen as part of the trial/sentencing.

  4. Alexander says:

    Terrible, sad story.

    I’m not sure that lower speed limits or revised street engineering could have prevented this crash, however. DUI drivers don’t follow any speed limit. Any straight section of road allows modern cars to reach dangerous speeds in a few seconds. Short of physically preventing high speeds by converting straight streets into chicanes, dangerous speeds will always be possible. Even at 20mph, there’s still a 10% chance of death and probably a 30-40% chance of life-altering serious injury.

    I would like to see the bail minimum for any homicide raised to $500,000. That might keep people like this off the streets before trial, at least.

  5. Rob says:

    Alexander, I respectfully disagree with your opinion that road design does not matter. If someone is drunk and bent on driving dangerously, they will go 80 mph on the freeway, 40-50 on an arterial, and maybe 30 on a residential street. Even drunks obey a level of road design. Even a sober person could easily find themselves driving 40 mph late at night if they just got off the freeway and aren’t paying attention. The street is simply too wide and too dangerous when traffic is light, and the street is dangerously chaotic when traffic is heavy.

  6. Janine says:

    He killed someone. He gets the weapon handed back to him. WTFH is wrong with us?

    • Brandon Blake says:

      It’s insane, I agree. Heartbreaking news and outcome for his family. Can’t express my condolences enough. Sigh. Another bright soul lost.

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  8. Richard Fuhr says:

    The article says “As a condition of his [the defendant’s] release, he cannot drink or possess alcohol, go to an establishment that primarily sells alcohol or drive a vehicle without an ignition interlock.” — my reaction to this is the following. Have we learned NOTHING from the case of Mark Mullan, who murdered two people and seriously injured two others? Mullan also was ordered to install ignition interlock devices in all his vehicles. He also had his driver’s license revoked. He ignored everything and drove drunk again, committing these awful crimes. In the present case, the only way we can be sure that the defendant can not drive is to keep him locked up. To those who say we can’t afford to do this, I say that the defendant (not the taxpayers) shall be forced to pay the entire cost of his prison time; it would be about $40000/year. What is unacceptable and is way too risky is to allow him to have any access to a motor vehicle.

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