Last week, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office issued a statement, saying police are aware of the recent increase in car and motorcycle groups gathering in parking lots of businesses and on area roadways.
On Monday, the Sheriff’s Office issued a new statement, saying that five people were taken into custody, four of which were arrested, police said, for “actively racing on roadways in Southside area.”
According to JSO, during the past weekend, police conducted deployments in an effort to curb “illegal and dangerous behaviors.”
“Upon being apprehended, not only were these individuals ticketed and arrested, but their vehicles towed and impounded as well. In addition to the arrests, officers distributed more than 25 citations to offenders stemming from the street racing complaints,” the Sheriff’s Office said.
The Sheriff’s Office said in its statement that it’s also illegal to participate in the spectating of street racing, as well as being a passenger in a vehicle while in the act of racing.
For months, the I-TEAM has reported on car meetups that have peppered the city, along with street racing that in some cases had led to crashes. In one incident in March, according to police, two motorcyclists were killed while doing stunts together on the Northside.
Several of the complaints raised over car meetups in Jacksonville have been about large groups of drivers meeting up in private parking lots and doing things like “doughnuts,” which damage the lots. In one case, a property manager told the I-TEAM that it would cost between $60,000 and $70,000 to fix the damage to his lot. With the street racing, there have been concerns over safety and noise brought up.
Car clubs have spoken out following the I-TEAM reports, with many saying videos of the dangerous antics are giving the car community in Jacksonville a bad name.
The Sheriff’s Office has asked for the community’s help if they observe large gatherings or “dangerous driving patterns” to call 904-630-0500 or submit a tip to [email protected].
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