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Street Racing Crackdown: Keep Your Teen Out of Trouble

As the month of June came to a close, so did the long-planned crack-down by multiple law enforcement (LE) agencies on what is known in the LA County area as a “sideshow” but is really an unlawful and very dangerous “street racing” event. Many see these events as sport, but the truth is without controls, rules, planned courses, emergency response teams, and other professional services these amateur setups are a recipe for disaster. Even at a well-organized event, things can get out of control and when have a one or two-ton speeding vehicle out of control, many people can get seriously injured or die.

The Participants and the Results

The LA County Sheriff’s Department and District Attorney’s (DA) Office, the Sheriff Station at Santa Clarita Valley (SCV) Summer Enforcement, and the Newhall CA Highway Patrol (CHP) participated in this joint operation to end these illegal events and make our community safer. Captain Krusey from the CHP’s office at Newhall supervised the crackdown where 102 spectators and seven participants were arrested or ticketed for these misdemeanor violations of CA Vehicle Code (CVC) 23109 (c), “Exhibition of Speed,” reckless driving, or aiding and abetting. Sub-Section c states, “A person shall not engage in a motor vehicle exhibition of speed on a highway, and a person shall not aid or abet in a motor vehicle exhibition of speed on any highway.“

Although the CVC does not distinguish between an actual racing participant or those aiding in the criminal activity, it does seem that the penalties would be less for the spectators than the participant and the 17 minors will likely receive lesser penalties. Still, this is a misdemeanor offense and the spectators are lucky to be ticketed rather than hospitalized or eulogized.

Those convicted of violating this CVC face jail time of 1-90 days, a fine of $325 to $1000 before state and county surcharges, fees, and assessments are added with will likely double the total, their car can be impounded for 30 days at the owner’s expense, which is the LA County area is $39.00 per day times 30 equals $1,170, plus the towing fee, plus a 10 percent tax, their insurance will skyrocket if they can get an insurance company when their current policy is up, and the judge can order their license suspended for three to six months. Those under age in attendance are subject to some of the same penalties and certainly those of age if convicted face a criminal record.

Many who complain that the spectators are being unfairly targeted and fleece with fines do not understand the seriousness of street racing to both drivers and spectators. Most see the Fast & Furious movies and think what is the difference. Much of the movie is cinematography computer simulations, and stunt drivers under controlled circumstances with emergency crews standing by if something goes out of control. At these illegal “street races” there are not any kind of emergency services or controls. What happens when a two-ton vehicle loses control and there are 102 people standing there watching? Do you believe everyone will just move out of the way?

Keeping Your Teen Out of Legal Trouble

As was stated previously, 17 of those ticketed at the scene were juveniles and although watching “street racing” seems like harmless fun, it can be very dangerous and it is illegal. And, despite what one press release said about your teen having an “illegally modified vehicle” being a warning sign is no truer than the misnomer of your teen wearing a hoodie makes him or her a thug.

Many teens probably do not even know that just being at a street race is illegal, make them aware and keep them safer. It’s just like one of the commenters on SCV News column said, “There are 3 race tracks within an hour and a half of here…” and, there is a lot of legal activities, “in SCV… the roller coaster capital of the world is in the city, not to mention movie theaters, Mountasia, bowling alleys, laser tag, go carts, ice rinks…” and another said, “Anyone defending these “kids” and basically saying it’s ok to race on city and residential streets NOT designed for racing is very questionable indeed.”

Bottom line, know what your teens are doing and make sure they know what’s legal or you might need a traffic ticket attorney.

Promoting Street Racing Is Illegal

Call Bigger & Harman when you need the advice and counsel of a true traffic ticket lawyer when you have been accused of street racing or abetting a street race. You might also send an email detailing your circumstances and they will respond promptly, attorney@markbigger.com. Bigger & Harman help you resolve traffic citations or tickets in Central Valley and Southern CA traffic courts. They serve clients in Tulare, Kern, LA, Mono, Kings, Riverside, Inyo, San Bernardino, and others.

Se habla Español 661.349.9755.