Infamous YouTube “Run ’em in a Ditch” Driver Arrested in Alabama

An Alabama man whose YouTube videos made him an internet villain among cyclists has been arrested and charged with reckless endangerment.

Cyclists around the country had seized on videos created by Michael Keith Maddox, of Piedmont, Alabama, who was fond of recording himself passing cyclists and exclaiming “Ought to run him in a ditch.” A mashup of his videos is posted above.

“Ride your little bicycle, you piece of crap,” he yells in one. “I’m going to hurt one of them one of these days, I can’t help it.” In another, he revs his engine while passing two cyclists and laughs gleefully at frightening them. “That scare you boys?”

Cyclists seemed to think Maddox’s videos expressed an all-too-common mind frame. “I feel like I meet one person with his attitude on every ride,” wrote one YouTube commenter.

The videos were turned over to the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Department as evidence against Maddox. reported today that the department served Maddox a warrant. Bond was set at $3,000.

“While we knew this would be controversial, we have the duty to investigate all complaints brought to us,” read a statement on the sheriff’s department’s Facebook page. “Knowing the nature of this case we presented it to the District Attorney’s Office for review. Which resulted in the issuance of a warrant. It’s a tough job that has to be done.”

The Anniston Star, meanwhile, writes that Maddox apologized on Facebook.

“I want to publicly apologize to all people that I have offended over those absolute stupid videos that I posted … anybody who knows me knows that would never ever intentionally hurt anyone,” Maddox wrote. “I am truly sorry for anyone I may have offended … and please everyone share the road and be very aware of bicycle riders everywhere.”

  • You have to admit it is quite humorous, especially with that southern accent

  • Joe Linton

    As much as the tone and words are alarming, I am always surprised to see how many drivers (including reporters, etc.) take photos and video and post them on line. I’d like to see these folks cited for distracted driving on the basis of photographic evidence.

  • Kenny Easwaran

    He didn’t offend us – he threatened our lives! (Maybe he did it in an offensive way, but that’s besides the point – it’s the threat that counts.)

  • bobfairlane

    The only thing admitted is that the cager wanted to “run them in the ditch”. It’s not funny.

  • bobfairlane

    He’s only “apologizing” on the advice of his lawyer.

  • andrelot

    Many people use passively dashboard mounted cameras, that require no operation other than turning them on. Later, they retrieve footage, and take stills or videos, edit and upload them.

    Not much different than a cyclist using a GoPro on his/her helmet.

  • User_001

    Yeah but this is not one of them!

  • Slātlantican

    I just saw the video for the first time–what on earth is wrong with that guy?

    Having said that, I’m not sure that his offenses rise to the level and expense of a jury trial. How about this: his lawyer negotiates a plea agreement under which Maddox will have a spotless record, provided he has to ride a bicycle to work every day for one year.

  • Guest

    Did he threaten someone specifically? Or did he just fantasize about harming others?

    The latter is hardly unusual. And for every 100 people who commit “thought murder”, perhaps only one carries through with it.

    So the real question here is when does a thought rise to the level of a material threat? I’m not sure a rant qualifies.

  • ya but he didn’t run them into a ditch

  • Jesse

    What User said. This is definitely not one of them. Look how much the camera moves and shakes.

  • Jesse

    Poe’s law strikes again. This is almost as funny as Dorothy Rabinowitz. Thank you Maddox for making our point better than we ever could.

  • Rob

    I am an avid cyclist, 20,000 miles on a bike in the last few years, and I of course don’t like the video, but it is obviously a satire. While on the road his passes were completely safe — well more than the three feet required. The last clip shows him rounding a corner, slowing up and waiting to pass, then speeding up to make a safe pass. The engine revs just so he can get past the cyclists as quickly as possible.

    This is going to make us cycling advocates look like idiots when he gets off and then sues for false arrest.

  • Swathi Krishna

    Every year the city hosts a home tour called the Eufaula pilgrimage, which culminates with the grand mansions on North Eufaula Avenue. That event and other cultural tourism brings millions of dollars to the local economy every year.Which is why many residents were horrified when the Alabama Department of Transportation came to town in November and announced it would be widening North Eufaula Avenue, through the heart of the historic district.


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