The bureau reports that on Sunday ( April 30) night, Portland police officers conducted a street racing operation in North Portland, during which they made five arrests and issued 25 citations. At night, a pack of speed demons overtook North Columbia Boulevard near Peninsular Avenue.
They stayed there for a few hours, sometimes starting their antics at about 10 o’clock. A drone and canine unit from the North Precinct of the Police Bureau and several holdovers from the old traffic division showed up to help.
A pedestrian was k!lled in an August street racing-related accident, and four others, including an 11-year-old, were wounded in a March 2022 g*nsh0t related to a street takeover, prompting the mission.
The Portland City Council p@ssed a new rule in 2021 that increased penalties for street racing, including the towing of vehicles. In April, Governor Tina Kotek agreed to send Oregon State Police troopers to Portland to assist in cr@cking down on street racing. However, specifics of this emerging relationship have yet to be made public.
Police spokeswoman Terri Wallo-Strauss said last month that the missions are expensive because they include crowd management during high-risk racing events, which typically necessitates an air support unit and officer overtime.
Oregon State Senator Chris Gorsek (D-Gresham) introduced Senate Bill 615 earlier this year to stiffen penalties for drivers caught in drag racing. If the bill is enacted, anyone found guilty of street racing for the first time might spend up to a year in pris0n and pay a fine of more than $6,000, depending on the severity of the offense.
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Their cars can be seized by the police as well. A second conviction carries the potential penalties of a five-year jail term and a $100,000 fine. On Thursday, SB 615 will be heard in the House Judiciary Committee.
Racing on a public road is a Class A traffic infraction under Oregon law, with a usual punishment of $440. Being found guilty of arranging a street race is a severe cr!me. Police towed two automobiles during the sting operation. According to a press statement issued by the agency on Monday afternoon, 20-30 individuals managed to evade capture.
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