Date registered: Jan 2005
Vehicle: 2006 ML350
Location: Chicago, IL
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Police: Schwarzenegger Riding Illegally
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was riding his motorcycle illegally over the weekend when he collided with a car in his Los Angeles neighborhood, police said Tuesday.
Los Angeles Police Lt. Paul Vernon said Schwarzenegger does not have the proper endorsement on his California driver's license to operate a motorcycle.
Vernon said police did not ticket the governor for a violation because they arrived after the accident, which caused Schwarzenegger to suffer a cut on his upper lip that required 15 stitches.
Instead, officers referred their findings to the Los Angeles city attorney's office, which will determine whether the governor should be cited for an infraction. Driving a motorcycle without the proper license can result in fines ranging from $100 to $250 or more.
The city attorney's office could not immediately confirm receiving the police department's report.
Earlier Tuesday, Schwarzenegger acknowledged that he never bothered to obtain a motorcycle license because he "never thought about it."
"I just never really applied for it," he told reporters during a state budget briefing. "It was just one of those things that I never really did."
Schwarzenegger, a Harley Davidson owner who rides regularly along the California coast, said he had a motorcycle license when he lived in Europe, but never thought about getting another one after he arrived in the United States in 1968.
Schwarzenegger spokeswoman Margita Thompson, acting on initial information Sunday, said the governor's Class C driver's license allowed him to ride the motorcycle with its sidecar attached. His 12-year-old son, Patrick, who was riding in a sidecar, was unhurt.
But Thompson conceded the governor probably took years of illegal motorcycle rides because he lacked an endorsement on his license that would permit him to drive a motorcycle without a sidecar.
To get such an endorsement, a motorcycle rider must pass a skills test given by the state Department of Motor Vehicles or take a motorcycle training course from a program approved by the California Highway Patrol.
California Highway Patrol officers accompanied Schwarzenegger on Sunday's ride, but police spokesman Steve Kohler declined to discuss if officers had checked, or would check in the future, whether the governor had a proper license. Kohler said he could not disclose such information because it involved Schwarzenegger's protective detail.
2006 ML 350 - Black, Appearance Package, Navigation System, Entertainment Package, Sunroof Package, Heated Seats, IPod Integration