MARIN COUNTY (KPIX 5) — Park rangers are telling hikers to beware of “Officer Spandex” — a bicyclist who’s been harassing people and their dogs on Marin County trails.
Authorities got report last week of a bicyclist in the Blithedale Summit Open Space who began berating a woman for walking her dogs off leash even though it’s legal to do that there.
“This person became very aggressive with the lady and took his phone out and started to take pictures of her which she didn’t enjoy,” said Superintendent of Marin County Parks.
The man, dressed in black spandex bike gear, reportedly did the same thing about three weeks ago, going so far as to kick or throw rocks at another woman’s dogs.
“I’m not sure what his motivation is,” Sanford is. “But he wants to use our open space preserves to himself, it sounds like.”
But what’s really raised the ire of officials is that in both instances the man claimed to be with “the department” giving the impression that he was a ranger. The real rangers here don’t wear spandex and they don’t like people impersonating park staff.
“We are a very professional department and we want people to respect us as we respect them,” Sanford said.
“He’s probably just looking for something to be, like, ‘I’m the one who’s right!'” said Sasha De Jesus a professional dog walker. “So, he just made that up off the cuff, but that’s wrong.”
De Jesus frequently walks dogs on Marin County trails and has had run-ins with bicyclists. She has some advice for “officer spandex.”
“Try to, like, take a chill pill before confronting people,” she said. “Just don’t, because it makes your blood pressure go up.”
Rangers here would like to remind everyone that the open space is open to all and just because the road may end doesn’t mean civility should, as well.