The annual Grand Floral Parade in Northeast Portland was unexpectedly halted on Saturday morning. It’s been reported that just 20 minutes before the start of the celebrations, a guy drove his pickup vehicle into the parade path, generating widespread panic and confusion.
According to reports from the scene obtained by reporters, the driver, 42-year-old Sidney Sean Mecham, caused a terrifying chain reaction when he drove dangerously along the parade route. Worryingly, kids were still hanging around as Mecham raced by, picking up sweets from the road.
A Portland Police Bureau officer was keeping a close eye on the situation and heard the commotion as people tried to get Mecham’s attention by shouting and running off the street. As Mecham rode east on NE Weidler Street, the pursuing officer followed on a motorbike. An officer tried to pull Mecham over, but the motorist reportedly disobeyed and kept driving south on Northeast MLK Jr. Boulevard. The policeman moved up next to Mecham and again told him to stop over, but he continued on his way.
The officer, according to the Portland Police Bureau, made an effort to beat the vehicle to the crossing to give pedestrians advance warning. Mecham had to swerve to avoid running with the police officer as it became apparent that they were headed in the same direction. Mecham made a sudden left turn onto Northeast Wasco Street, endangering families sitting on the curb before the officer could move back in front of the truck to hamper its progress. Chech the tweet below:-
— Portland Police (@PortlandPolice) June 11, 2023
Mecham reportedly ignored barricades and nearly struck parade volunteers, but the officer followed him nevertheless. Mecham strayed off the procession path and eventually came to a stop near the corner of Northeast 24th Avenue and Clackamas Street, where the police had been following him.
Mecham was quickly captured by law authorities and is now facing many accusations, including reckless endangerment, disorderly conduct, attempting to evade, careless driving, and hit and run (for a previous incident that is unconnected to this one). Mecham also received tickets for driving with a suspended license, disobeying police orders, and not having insurance.
To get to the location from the northbound I-5, Mecham had to avoid two Oregon Department of Transportation trucks blocking the ramp at Northeast Weidler Street, as was later discovered by the authorities. They found out that Mecham avoided the vehicles by going through the ivy on the ramp’s slope. After then, Mecham’s vehicle was seized.
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Despite the frightening disruption, attendees nevertheless had a good time, according to eyewitnesses. Thankfully, nobody was hurt, and the procession went on as scheduled. Nonetheless, the event left many spectators wondering what may have prompted the driver’s dangerous actions.
Officer David Baer may be reached at [email protected], and anybody who felt threatened during the chase should write to him with case number 23-152688 in the subject line.