Hit-and-run driver reportedly had large alcohol tab before hitting cyclist 

A man who allegedly killed a German cyclist with his Mercedes Benz after drinking heavily at a posh Financial District restaurant had tried to cover up the collision and switch seats with his girlfriend before fleeing, according to documents filed by prosecutors Friday.

Josh Calder, 36, pleaded not guilty this morning to charges of vehicular manslaughter, hit-and-run and driving under the influence.

At about 10:40 p.m. Aug. 13, Calder was driving an older-model Mercedes-Benz at the intersection of Masonic Avenue and Turk Street when he allegedly struck from behind 21-year-old bicyclist Nils Linke, according to police. Linke is a German national who was visiting the U.S.

Calder, who has an Oakland address, had allegedly come from Kokkari restaurant at 200 Jackson St. where he and his girlfriend had enjoyed a booze-soaked dinner. Investigators pulled the receipt for the meal, which included two bottles of wine, shots of liquor and after-dinner drinks, according to documents.

Witnesses report seeing Calder smash into the back of Linke and his bicycle, then getting out of the driver’s seat, moving the bike to the side of the road, then switching seats with his girlfriend before fleeing the scene.

Police received the 911 dispatch and officers were able to pull over Calder’s car about two blocks away.

Calder posted bail, which was set at $500,000, Thursday night. He is scheduled to return to court Oct. 1 for a status hearing.

bbegin@sfexaminer.com

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Brent Begin

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