MIAMI – Dozens of people were arrested Monday during the annual and illegal “Wheels Up, Guns Down” ride in South Florida.
The Broward Sheriff’s Office seized 34 vehicles during the crackdown and made 14 arrests, while the Miami-Dade Police Department seized 36 vehicles and made 11 felony arrests and five misdemeanor arrests.
Cellphone video shows one group of riders showing off on the Palmetto Expressway in Doral when one biker wipes out.
Doral police moved in, but the rider hopped on the back of another bike and took off.
Tow yard employees in Miami, meanwhile, used a forklift Tuesday to rearrange the ATVs seized during the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day rideout, which began over the weekend.
“The police -- they were ready I guess for Monday. Because Monday was the craziest day,” a man who went to a tow yard Tuesday to get his ATV said.
The man, identified only as Eddie, tried to get his ATV back at Downtown Towing on Northwest 20th Street in Miami’s Allapattah neighborhood.
He said he let his friend borrow it for the rideout, but his friend got arrested and police took the ATV.
“Kind of sucks, you know, but I guess it is what it is. Like, next time, now I know not to lend it out,” he said.
Large groups of motorcyclists, dirt bikers and ATV riders took over the streets of South Florida for the annual event.
From Sky 10, you could see them popping wheelies, cutting people off and boxing in some drivers.
Some even got hurt.
“It is dangerous, but I mean, like, we don’t just run red lights and all of that stuff. We make sure we stop in traffic safely,” Eddie told Local 10 News.
Eddie admits taking part in the unsanctioned rideout Saturday.
“Do you know that it’s illegal to ride ATVs on the public street?” Local 10 News reporter Madeleine Wright asked.
“Yeah, I kind of know that,” he said. “I don’t know. It’s a lifestyle, I guess.”
Authorities said some riders abandoned their vehicles before officers could get to them.
One Florida Highway Patrol trooper tried to block some of the riders in, video from Sky 10 shows.
“I understand why the cops don’t like it because there’s people who, they take the sidewalks and they do a bunch of crazy stuff, but I’m not saying it’s like we’re angels either,” Eddie said.
Employees said a lot of the vehicles seized during the rideout were stolen, some from as far away as Detroit.
That’s why police have a five-day hold on the vehicles, so they have time to go through each vehicle, write down the VIN and track down the owners.