Batman mowed down on highway
HAGERSTOWN, Md. (AP):
A Maryland man who delighted thousands of children by impersonating Batman at hospitals and charity events died when he was hit by a car while standing in the fast lane of Interstate 70, checking the engine of his custom-made Batmobile, police said last Monday.
Leonard B. Robinson, 51 years old of Owings Mills, was returning from a weekend festival in South Charleston, West Virginia, when he was struck by a Toyota Camry at about 10:30 p.m. on Sunday near the unincorporated community of Big Pool, about 90 miles west of Baltimore. Robinson had pulled his car onto the median with the passenger side partly in the traffic lane, police said.
Police said the Camry also sideswiped the red and black Batmobile, a replica of the car used in the 1960s Batman television show. The Camry driver, a 39-year-old man from Charlottesville, Virginia, wasn't hurt and hasn't been charged.
Police said Robinson's car was uninsured and wore a Maryland license, '4BATMAN', that was issued to another vehicle.
DC Entertainment, the Warner Bros Entertainment Inc unit that owns Batman, said it was aware of Robinson's work and had no objections. The company posted a message on the official Batman Facebook page: "Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Leonard Robinson, who shared his love of Batman with everyone around him."
Robinson, co-owner of an appliance-repair business in Falls Church, Virginia, began visiting hospitalised children in 2001, masquerading as his son's favourite superhero, according to Robinson's website, www.superheroesforkids.org.
He gained national attention in 2012 when a dashcam video surfaced of police in Silver Spring, Maryland, pulling him over while he was driving his black Lamborghini (not the Batmobile replica) dressed as Batman. Robinson traded the Lamborghini for the Batmobile later that year.