Street race suspects arrested as WMP promises no let up on road menaces.
“Motorists prepared to put people’s lives at risk by racing on our roads need to accept they may well end up in jail.”
That’s the warning from West Midlands Police as the force reiterates the consequences for any drivers who ignore the Car Cruising Injunction in place across Birmingham, Solihull and the Black Country.
It comes after four drivers were hauled before court yesterday on suspicion of breaching the injunction on Sunday night in Birmingham. The four men − aged 18, 26, 27 and 31 − are alleged to have been engaged in street racing on Nechells Parkway and the A38 Minworth by-pass, weaving between traffic, aggressively undertaking other motorists and driving well in excess of the speed limits.
They appeared at Birmingham County Court accused of breaching the injunction − introduced city-wide in October 2016 − and were bailed to return at a later date.
The High Court order bans people from taking part in car cruising, including speeding, racing and driving in convoy, performing stunts and causing an obstruction on a public highway.
West Midlands Police Superintendent Dean Hatton, head of Force Traffic, said: “We’ve taken a really firm stance on street racers in recent years: more than 200 have been taken to court and handed heavy fines and driving bans. And the High Court order − secured by us alongside Birmingham City Council − now gives us additional powers to take offenders to court.
“Reports of street racing have reduced dramatically as offenders understand we won’t tolerate it and have regular proactive patrols to catch them. But recently we have seen an upturn in complaints from residents and other motorists reporting anti-social driving. These arrests should highlight that it still an issue we take very seriously and anyone convicted of ignoring the injunction needs to understand we will take them to court − and the punishment can be very severe.”
The High Court order − which runs until October 2019 − means anyone caught racing or joining unauthorised vehicle rallies on the city’s streets will be held in contempt of the ruling and can be put before a judge. It spans the whole of Birmingham and also covers wider anti-social motoring like riding in convoy, performing stunts, or revving engines, blaring horns and playing loud music at vehicle gatherings. Anyone found in contempt of the court order could be jailed for up to two years.
Supt Hatton added: “Signs have been put up at the roadside on hotspot routes, including the A47 Fort Parkway, A38, A45 and city centre Middleways, warning drivers about the Injunction. There are no excuses.”
The men, from Birmingham, Walsall and Wolverhampton, are all expected to reappear at Birmingham County Court next month.