Daredevil motorists are taking over valley streets to carry out dangerous stunts behind the wheel in hopes of creating viral moments on social media.
Last weekend, the Metropolitan Police Department received multiple calls about such incidents where large groups of people and vehicles took over valley intersections and performed various stunts inside crowds of people. The cars sometimes came within inches of spectators, many of whom had their smart phones out to document the madness.
Metro issued a statement Thursday on the recent trend and said it is working on its response times.
“LVMPD is aware of videos circulating on social media of various car meets or trick driving events, which occurred over the Labor Day weekend throughout the Las Vegas valley,” Metro said in the statement. “In the videos, drivers can be seen engaging in reckless driving behavior, which placed onlookers in unnecessary danger.”
Metro wouldn’t expand on its plans to better respond to such illegal car events, stating it could not reveal investigative techniques.
The department did request the public’s assistance and asked residents to call 311 if they know of similar events planned or taking place. Similar trick shows and street racing have led to deadly crashes in the past.
If officers aren’t able to respond to a trick driving incident in the future, they can pursue charges against individuals shown in videos by checking for license plates and other identifiable means.
A new law went into effect this year that makes trick driving chargeable as reckless driving, a gross misdemeanor.
Additionally, anyone helping facilitate speed contests or trick driving displays can also be charged with reckless driving.
Trick driving is classified as diverting or slowing traffic on public roads to allow for stunts or the filming of stunts.
Penalties for those who participate in or organize trick driving include a minimum fine of $1,000, a minimum of 100 hours of community service, possible jail time, a driver’s license suspension of six months to two years and impounding of vehicles used in the stunt for up to 30 days.
Multiple offenders can face fines of up to $2,000, carry out 200 hours of community service, and face possible jail time of up to 364 days.
Spectators can also face penalties as Clark County code prohibits people from spectating such events.
“The illegal street races occur on a regular basis on various streets within the county,” Clark County Code 14.24.070 reads. “Hundreds of racers and spectators gather on these streets late at night and in the early morning hours, blocking streets and sidewalks to traffic, forming a racetrack area, placing bets, and otherwise encouraging, aiding and abetting the racing process.”