BALTIMORE -- A Baltimore man was arrested after police seized 17 dirt bikes and ATVs, along with multiple firearms and ammunition, from a mechanic shop.
Kevin Lenard Bridgeforth, 44, has been charged with illegal possession of a firearm, unlawful taking of a motor vehicle, unauthorized removal of a motor vehicle, theft and several other violations.
Officers executed a search and seizure warrant on Nov. 21 at a location on N. Luzerne Avenue. That's when police observed and seized the dirt bikes, ATVs and guns.
Police recovered a revolver, an AR-15 style pistol, five pellet guns, and numerous amounts of ammunition for different caliber weapons.
Charging documents obtained by WJZ reveal that the investigation started after residents in the Broadway East community complained of dirt bike activity being conducted regularly in the area.
"The community is instrumental to our success, their success. The more the community does cooperate and get us information, the better we can do our jobs," Sergeant Joseph Recine told WJZ Investigator Mike Hellgren. "This is a perfect instance of that. I wouldn't have known where to look unless multiple people and multiple neighbors were reaching out to me and letting me know where the problem was."
Recine said serial numbers had been scrubbed from some of the stolen dirt bikes, but officers were able to find owners from Harford and Carroll counties and Leesburg in northern Virginia and Camden, New Jersey.
"We've already tracked down all the original owners," Recine said. "They're filtering in now to pick up their bikes. They're very, very pleased. The ones that don't have any owners or are unregistered will eventually be disposed of."
When officers went to the location with their search warrant, they were met by two "large breed dogs," according to the charging documents, the entry gates were not secure. Animal control handled the dogs while officers searched the property.
Five of the ATVs were stolen from surrounding jurisdictions, according to charging documents, while officers were unable to locate serial numbers on two of the vehicles, and another one had an obliterated serial number.
Bridgeforth had also been concealing unregistered firearms and ammunition at the property after being prohibited from possession of firearms.
Councilman Antonio Glover, who represents the area, told Hellgren the seizure is a "relief" and he had fielded several complaints about dirt bikes and illegal dumping in the area.
He noted the 1600 block of North Luzerne where the seizure happened is "isolated." It backs up to the historic Baltimore Cemetery.
"It's secluded and isolated, so that's why it happens," said Phil Jones, who lives in the Broadway East community. "There are no cameras, no lights. They're dumping in back of people's houses, and it's just ridiculous."
Since January 1, 2023, officers have seized.
If you know of anyone who is illegally riding and/or storing dirt bikes in Baltimore City, contact the Dirt Bike Tip Line at 443-902-4474.
"It's a huge nuisance to the community," Recine said. "Everyone complains about the noise, the erratic driving. It's an absolute mess. We need to find other ways a to be able to stop the dirt bikers and seize the dirt bikes without just getting into car chases and stuff like that and this is a good alternative method to enforcing that kind of stuff. Nobody got hurt, there was no chase, no injuries, nothing like that."
You can watch more BPD video of the raid here.
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