Richmond Police stop hundreds of drivers from attempted ‘city takeover’ this weekend
RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Richmond Police say they were able to stop a planned car club takeover of the city from getting out of control.
“Their entire point was to come to Richmond, specifically Richmond, to do burnouts, donuts, and other illegal activities on the streets of Richmond,” said Richmond Police Chief Gerald Smith.
Organizers of what’s called “RVA 2.0″ spent several months blasting the event details, which police quickly picked up on.
“We watch social media quite a bit, monitoring for any illegal activities and things that can help us in the investigation, and we came across it, and we started to monitor it very closely,” said Chief Smith.
Saturday night, Richmond Police say about 300 cars converged on the city to meet up at various locations. Police say the groups met in large parking lots, including SouthSide Plaza and near Laburnam and Hermitage on the city’s northside.
But officers were waiting when they arrived and diffused about six meet-up locations that night. In the end, Smith says they issued 45 tickets for various reasons, including reckless driving and disregarding a red light.
“That’s very dangerous behavior - speeding. You’re talking about they are taking their life in their own hand, and not only their life but an innocent pedestrian who may not know exactly what’s taking place,” said Smith.
One person was also arrested for eluding police. His car was impounded.
The viewer said he estimated about 1,500 people at the takeover. He added that most of the people there were there to talk cars and show them off and not commit crimes.
“There’s no other way to put it. This is foolish, and it’s not going to be tolerated in Richmond,” said Smith.
Police had help from a Virginia State Police helicopter to track the groups as they moved around the city. The chief says those attending came from all over Virginia and DC and Maryland.
Forty-five summons were issued for offenses including:
- Reckless driving
- Illegal tint
- Expired registration
- No proof of insurance
- Disregarding a red light
- Improper display of license plates
- Defective equipment
- Failure to have vehicle inspected
- Improper exhaust system
- Failure to wear a seatbelt
- No valid operator’s license
RPD arrested Richard C. Shreve, Jr. and charged him with felony eluding of a law enforcement officer, reckless driving, and illegal window tint. Shreve’s car was impounded.
“Our message is clear and simple, we will not tolerate this activity on the streets of Richmond, and we will strictly enforce the law when it comes to potentially endangering the lives of others,” said Smith. “I’m proud of how our officers stopped efforts to wreak havoc on the city of Richmond, they prevented what could have been a very tragic event.”
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