NYPD Begins Crackdown on Daredevil Bike Riders
by David Greene
Police on Staten Island have confiscated four high-end racing bikes and have charged four teens with reckless endangerment and disorderly conduct after the four were observed popping wheelies and darting in and out of traffic.
Residents and drivers have complained for years about the large group of teens around the city who have been observed doing their stunts in traffic and filming their stunts and posting it to social media. At least one person was recently killed on Staten Island, when two vehicles collided– after a teen sped through a red light.
Michael Reilly, who hosts a Facebook page that posted one photo of a group of teens on their bikes, told WCBS News reporter Tony Aiello, “We want them to ride bikes, but we want them to do it safely. I’m all for popping wheelies and having fun, but not with a 4,000 pound car.”
Charlie Carrero of Westchester Square understands the $1,000 price tag for racing bikes, explaining, “Parents don’t understand, but a light frame you get more mileage, you can do more tricks and it’s easier to lift them, but there are places for that. We have a nice park over here in Pelham Bay.”
Carrero added, “We have kids crossing the street’s, the elderly, people in wheelchairs, so we have to be careful and hold the parents responsible.”
One former rider, a resident of Norwood who goes by the name, “Smokey Dallaz,” said of the crackdown, “I don’t think they should be punished, We’ve been doing this for years. Its apart of growing up a kid and its something we enjoyed doing.”
When confronted with some of the dangers the bike riders pose, Dallaz replied, “I don’t know what should be done, but they shouldn’t outlaw it completely.”
The NYPD began a similar campaign last April against illegal mini bike, dirt bike and ATV riders that resulted in hundreds of confiscated vehicles being destroyed.
The NYPD has so far declined to comment on whether these arrests were apart of a pilot program or a citywide crackdown.