Motorcyclists and ATV riders took over the streets of Miami-Dade and Broward counties, ignoring traffic lights, driving the wrong way down city streets and speeding on sidewalks on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
Black people disrupting white civilization... the perfect way to celebrate the memory of Martin Luther King
At least 150 riders started in Miami-Dade County about 3:30 p.m., moving north intoBroward County on Interstate 95. Riders went as far north as Pompano Beach before turning back south as night fell.
Although it's illegal to drive an ATV or an unauthorized motorcycle on roads in both counties, officials said they did not chase the riders or pull them over because it was too dangerous.
High speed chases — especially with motorcycles — create unnecessary dangers for law enforcement, the people they're pursuing and civilian drivers, said Sgt. Mark Wysocky, spokesman for the Florida Highway Patrol.
"It's a danger to the public," he said.
The riders were part of an organized event called "Bikes Up, Guns Down." Last year, riders made a similar trek in Miami-Dade County. This year, they reprised the event but traveled farther north into Broward County.
"What a horrible, counterproductive, dangerous stunt this is," Fort Lauderdale Deputy Fire Chief Tim Heiser told the Miami Herald. "I don't know what they are trying to do. It's just terrible. What are they trying to prove?"
Hollywood police said they made multiple arrests and handed out at least 10 citations.
Kamari Gardner, of Miami, was arrested in Hollywood after police responded to a large group of the riders stopped at a Shell gas station at 2800 Hollywood Blvd.
A large group of riders were running red lights and popping wheelies in traffic, officers said. After an officer put on his emergency lights, all of the riders except Gardner drove away.
According to an arrest report, Gardner was pulled over on a dirt bike and arrested for grand theft auto and driving without a license. He was also cited for various offenses regarding his motorbike, including failure to register a vehicle and operating a motorcycle between lanes.
The dirt bike he was reported stolen in Miami Gardens in 2014, according to the report.
Miami-Dade police said they arrested several people throughout the day but did not release any details.
Officials said they were prepared for crashes and traffic trouble but hoped the riders would tire and go home.
Law enforcement in Miami-Dade had officers at the on and off-ramps of exits on I-95.
"We are not here to arrest people per se," Miami-Dade police Maj. Ricky Carter told WSVN-Ch. 7, "but we are prepared for that contingency."
Last year's ride put the Florida Highway Patrol on alert, Wysocky said. The agency did not increase its patrols on Monday.
The riders started in Miami, moved north on I-95 and then exited the highway at Sunrise Boulevard. After traveling west, they continued north past Cypress Creek Road and then back down toward Miami as night began to fall. The ATVs and most of the motorcycles did not have lights.
As they began to return into Miami-Dade County, police blocked off some exits off of I-95 to divert riders out of the city.
Some motorcycles in Miami were confiscated by police and towed by the city.Was this not the perfect way to celebrate the true legacy of Martin Luther King? Was this not the epitome of Martin Luther King's entire life? Africans in America allowed to lawlessly traverse our streets while police are instructed to allow the black thuggery that negatively impacts the quality of life for the law-abiding to proceed unmolested by their executive authority? [Bikers get their rides back after "Bikes Up Guns Down",WSVN.com, 1-19-16]:
The MLK riders rode through the streets, preaching peace and non-violence. However, several laws were violated during the event. "We just having fun," said one biker retrieving his towed bike. "We ain't hurting nobody. We not busting nobody's windows. We not that type of gang. We relating a message, which is bikes up, guns down."
"This has nothing to do with Martin Luther King, this is just breaking the law," said one disgruntled tower. "'Guns down, bikes up,' what does that have to do with anything? They're just breaking the law."
Riders sped past stop lights and even went the wrong way on several streets, putting others on the road in danger. "I'm surprised last night nobody got killed," said Jorge Crespo, a motorcyclist who did not participate in the event. "It's the only time in the year that a thousand of them can get together and cops are not going to chase them because they cannot. That's all that is. They can get away with it."
The United States of America is irredeemable.
WSVN-TV - 7NEWS Miami Ft. Lauderdale News, Weather, Deco