Miami-Dade PD Makes 28 Arrests, Impounds 41 Off-Road Vehicles During 'Wheels Up, Guns Down'
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – It was a game of cat and mouse through the streets of South Florida on this Martin Luther King Jr. federal holiday as law enforcement tried to put the brakes on reckless riders during the annual "Wheels Up, Guns Down" event.
"It sucks to get my bike impounded because I wanted to ride. But we are going to get it in the morning. It's all good," Hunter Bellande said.
Bellande came to South Florida from New Orleans for the ride out. His dirt bike was towed away in Doral when he stopped at a gas station.
Off-road vehicles are banned from public roadways.
"We literally just ride bikes on the highway. If we see a car, we get out their way, go in front of them. We are not hurting anyone," Bellande said.
Video from Chopper 4 and viewer cellphone video showed the opposite.
Monday night, Miami-Dade police said 41 ATVs and dirt bikes had been impounded, two firearms seized and 28 arrests were made as a result of traffic enforcement.
In Broward, 18 criminal citations were issued, 14 arrests were made and 16 bikes were towed.
"We use air assets to follow overhead. Hope is they will Run out of gas, stop and we can effect an arrest," said a Broward Sheriff Office spokesperson.
Over the weekend, riders on ATVs, four-wheelers, and dirt bikes sent two police officers to the hospital and caused several crashes.
Sunday night a car and dirt bike collided in Miami Gardens. Police say the bike did not have any lights and was hit by a car backing out of a driveway in the 600-block of 199th Street. That rider was airlifted to the hospital in critical condition.
In southwest Miami-Dade, two officers were hurt on Sunday while checking out reports of reckless riders. Investigators say the officers were approaching a group of about 40 riders when they all took off along 127th Avenue. An ATV ran over the foot of one officer.
Another ATV crashed into the cruiser, the people on board then fled. A second officer got hurt while running after them.
John Aguilar, 22, was arrested for running into the cruiser.
Carlos Dominguez, 24, who was a part of Aguilar's group, was also for traffic infractions.
Cellphone video sent to CBS4 captured dozens of riders driving around at night in northwest Miami-Dade. This group was spotted at 27th Avenue and 67th Street.
Another group gathered at a gas station at NW 119th Street and East Golf Drive.
Law enforcement has issued a warning last week that they will crack down hard on people driving recklessly on streets in off-road vehicles.
"It's important for them to know they're putting their lives in danger, as well as others, and we are committed to making sure that, if we do stop you and we do apprehend you, that you will be arrested and your bike will be seized," warned Trooper Joe Sanchez.
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