28 Seconds: A True Story of Addiction, Injustice, and Tragedy

28 Seconds: A True Story of Addiction, Injustice, and Tragedy - Michael Bryant I have been curious about those 28 seconds on Bloor Street, the ones where former Attorney General Michael Bryant's life changed and cyclist Darcy Allan Sheppard lost his, ever since the incident was reported on the evening news. Like many people, I formed an instant opinion of what "probably" happened, and that opinion shifted this way and that based on the small pieces of information that came trickling out. And though it was a good thing for Bryant that the full presentation of evidence never happened in an open courtroom (just a preliminary hearing) because the charges were dropped, that does mean that curiosity about "the real truth" has lingered on.

So, of course, since this is Bryant's book, the question you have to ask as you read each page is, "Do I believe this version of events?" And, by and large, I do, though certainly I recognize he's putting the best spin possible on his own actions - and let's not forget he's a lawyer, so he's very accomplished at spin.

So was it road rage? More like panic, by the sound of it. Did he get better treatment from the courts because of who he was? Possibly, although he also points out that he was charged far sooner than normal in process because the authorities were bending over backwards to avoid that very perception.

The chapters about his alcoholism were painful to read, because he is so honest about his self-deceptive habits and I hope very much (a) that he was in fact several years sober when the incident occurred, as he asserts, and (b) that he still has that under control despite the failure of his marriage and the passing of his brother. I'm glad I read it - at least I now know what the various parties believe to be true.