The Atlanta Police Department conducted a weekend-long operation to crack down on illegal street racing in the city that resulted in the arrest of 44 people, 114 citations, 29 impounded vehicles, and recovery of four firearms, including a semi-automatic rifle.
“We pledged to deal with these speeders and reckless drivers who have shown a complete disregard for the safety of others with these dangerous antics,” said Chief Erika Shields. “This weekend, with the help of our law enforcement partners, we made inroads. We will continue to impound, arrest and seek costly fines for those individuals who choose Atlanta for this senseless behavior.”
Led by its Contingency Operations Division, APD developed a strategy and used a combination of intelligence, technology and manpower to track the illegal street racers, according to a media release from the department.
Arrests and citations were issued at several locations throughout the city that have been hotspots for such activity in the past, including interstates and Spring Street in Midtown.
APD was assisted by the Georgia State Patrol, the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office and the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office and the City of Atlanta Department of Corrections.
“We could not have done this without the assistance of these agencies, and our ability to work together toward our common goal to stop these behaviors on local streets and highways,” said Deputy Chief Terrell Griffin, commander of the Contingency Operations Division. “It truly was a team effort.”
Officers and investigators from the Atlanta Police Department’s Auto Crimes Enforcement, APEX, Aviation, Motors and Intelligence units, as well as the Video Integration Center, worked in conjunction with zone patrol officers to intercept and address illegal activity by street racers as they gathered over the weekend in a variety of locations.
Arrests and citations included traffic offenses such as laying drag, speeding and reckless driving to other criminal offenses such as DUI, drinking in public, and possession of marijuana. One convicted felon was found to be in possession of a firearm and charged accordingly.
Shields said APD would continue to target illegal street racing, which has proliferated after the COVID-19 crisis meant less traffic and empty streets during shelter-in-place.