So-called “street takeovers” are one of the most dangerous trends spreading across Southern California right now. Unlike street racing (which is also highly dangerous and very illegal) which is effectively drag racing in business parks or on unobstructed-enough roadways after hours, street takeovers involve a large group of cars “taking over” an intersection or parking lot, and in most instances don’t involve racing at all.
Sometimes referred to as “side shows,” participants in street takeovers do donuts and burnouts with large crowds gathering dangerously close to the action. Sometimes tires explode, bystanders get hit by cars, fights break out, or even shootings occur, but none of that has stopped hundreds of people from taking part in or watching these unruly takeovers.
Some cities such as Compton have tried using passive deterrents like “Botts dots” to make it harder to do burnouts and donuts in intersections, but those can just be scraped off by perpetrators.
To show that they mean business, several law enforcement agencies including the LAPD launched a massive raid of street takeovers this weekend, which resulted in over 30 cars being impounded and over 40 arrests, according to a report from KTLA.
Law enforcement says many of the vehicles taken will remain in impound for 30 days. Judging by photos released by the LAPD, one of the vehicles impounded looks like a Nissan 350Z convertible with a missing front bumper. Not really the best use of a project car, if you ask us.
It wasn’t just the participants getting punished, as current law states that even spectating street races or street takeovers is an offense that—even on the minor end—can net you a citation; on the more severe end, you can even have your car impounded.
The LAPD tweeted that during the crackdown, they stumbled upon some bonus PR material, including arresting a person who had a warrant for attempted murder and another individual who was in possession of a loaded “ghost gun,” an unserialized, unregistered firearm that is nearly untraceable by law enforcement.
As long as these street takeovers keep happening, law enforcement will likely continue to conduct crackdowns, make arrests, and impound vehicles. Needless to say, it is probably best to avoid these dangerous events altogether.
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