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San Francisco man, 81, charged in DUI crash that killed cycling champion

A bicycle painted white and adorned with flowers leans against a tree.
A "ghost bike" memorial is seen at the Presidio intersection where cyclist Ethan Boyes was killed on April 4, 2023. | Source: Jesse Rogala/The Standard

Federal prosecutors charged a San Francisco man with manslaughter and driving while intoxicated in a crash that killed a renowned cyclist in the Presidio this past spring.

Arnold Kinman Low, 81, was indicted Wednesday by a federal grand jury on two felony counts stemming from the April 4 collision that claimed the life of 44-year-old national bicycling champion Ethan Boyes in early April.

RELATED: USA Cycling Champion Killed While Biking in San Francisco

The United States Park Police, which investigated the crash, determined that Low was drunkenly driving through the federally owned Presidio around 4 p.m. that day when he struck a cyclist on Arguello Boulevard just south of Washington Boulevard.

Two people stand beside a white-painted bike at a roadside memorial adorned with flowers.
Sydney Parcell, right, and Wagner Sousa place a track cycling world champion jersey at a memorial on April 6, 2023, in San Francisco, near where friend Ethan Boyes was fatally struck by a vehicle earlier in the week. | Source: Stephen Lam/San Francisco Chronicle via AP

That cyclist turned out to be Boyes, who died soon after at a nearby hospital.

READ MORE: Champion Cyclist Killed in San Francisco Gets Burning Man Sendoff

Boyes was known as a USA Cycling Masters Champion and the holder of the national record in the "flying start" 500-meter time trial.

A man in a white cycling jersey and gold medal around his neck holds his right hand over his heart while clutching a bouquet of flowers in the other.
Ethan Boyes accepts his championship medal at the UCI Masters Track Cycling World Championships Men 40-44 Time Trial Awards Ceremony at the Velo Sports Center in Carson, California, on Sept. 24, 2022. Boyes was killed in a crash in the Presidio on Arguello Boulevard on April 4, 2023. | Source: Courtesy Craig Huffman/USA Cycling

The crash ignited calls in San Francisco's cycling community for protected bike lanes and safer streets.

In response, the Presidio Trust agreed to implement some infrastructure changes, such as narrowed car lanes, more warning signs and guardrails for the bike lanes.

RELATED: Protected Bike Lanes To Connect Golden Gate Park and Presidio in San Francisco

Low is set to make his initial appearance in federal court in San Francisco next Wednesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Alex Tse.

Assistant U.S. Attorney George Hageman is prosecuting the case with the assistance of Erick Machado. 

Jennifer Wadsworth can be reached at jennifer@sfstandard.com

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