Portland police are using a new ordinance to crack down on street racers.
The Rose City, like many other American cities, has seen a substantial increase in street racing during the pandemic. Events on the weekends have drawn hundreds of spectators and seen roads and intersections completely blocked off to other drivers.
Police believe at least one motorcyclist may have died while street racing this spring.
Ten days ago the city passed an ordinance creating two new misdemeanor crimes to tackle the problem: unlawful street takeover and unlawful staging of street takeover events.
Sunday night, Portland police towed eight cars and arrested over a dozen people, tweeting that they used the new code to enforce the actions. The Multnomah County Sheriff’s office and the Oregon State Police assisted.
Penalties for the new misdemeanors include towed cars, fines of up to $500 and jail time. First-time offenders are given the option to attend a diversion program instead.