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Street Takeover Mission Results in Arrests

PPB Cracks Down on Street Racing

Arrest (Photo Courtesy of Portland Police Bureau)


On the nights of Friday, April 12, 2024, Saturday, April 13, 2024, and Sunday, April 14, 2024, North Precinct officers conducted a Street Takeover Mission with assistance from the North Precinct Neighborhood Response Team, East Precinct officers who were conducting a Stolen Vehicle Operation, officers from the Traffic Division, the Oregon State Police, the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office, and a host of others. Officers spent hours each night disrupting street takeover events in all corners of the city. The mission resulted in 12 arrests and numerous citations. Additionally, one firearm was recovered and 33 vehicles were towed.


Six of those vehicles were forfeited as a result of the passing of Oregon Senate Bill 615.


The Portland Police Bureau will continue its efforts in educating community members about the dangers of speed racing and street takeovers. This education will be conducted on our social media platforms and through one-on-one conversations with participants. Enforcement action will also continue against individuals who are suspected of committing these types of crimes.


PPB wants to remind participants that street takeovers can result in jail time, fines, and towed vehicles.


In addition to state statutes, Portland City Code addresses this dangerous activity. 1) Unlawful street takeover event means an activity that is unpermitted, preplanned or contemporaneously coordinated by two or more persons, and involves one or more persons demonstrating, exhibiting, or comparing the maneuverability or power of one or more motor vehicles in a curved direction, in a circular direction, or around corners, including but not limited to by breaking traction in a curved or circular direction or around corners. 2) A person commits the offense of an Unlawful Street Takeover if, in a public place or upon a highway, the person knowingly operates a motor vehicle while engaged in an unlawful street takeover event. 3.1) Highway means the entire width of a public right-of-way when any portion thereof is intended for motor vehicle movement or motor vehicle access to abutting property. 3.2) Public place means an area, whether publicly or privately owned, generally open to the public and includes, without limitation, the grounds surrounding buildings or dwellings, streets, sidewalks, bridges, tunnels, alleys, plazas, parks, driveways, and parking lots.

The Portland Police Bureau has updated its vehicle towing policy and now authorizes towing for drivers operating vehicles without valid driving privileges and lack of insurance, and to address street takeovers.

 

The Bureau recently substantially revised Directive 0630.60, Vehicle Dispositions. Most significantly, the revised directive has the following changes: 1) The directive authorizes towing for certain offenses, such as unlicensed drivers, suspended drivers, and lack of insurance. 2) The directive authorizes towing for violating new Portland City Code, 14A.30.080, Unlawful Street Takeover and Unlawful Staging of a Street Takeover Event. 3) The directive provides new guidance on responding to stolen vehicles reported at tow lots, temporary holds for VIN inspections, and abandoned vehicle towing.


The most noteworthy change to revised Directive 0630.60 is the newly authorized towing for certain offenses such as driving uninsured, suspended, without a license, or in a street takeover pursuant to a new Portland City Code provision, 14A.30.080. This change brings the Bureau in line with both neighboring law enforcement agency common practice and state law authorization for towing. Additionally, the change was supported in public comments and among internal subject matter experts and stakeholders within the Bureau, and will serve as an additional tool for the Bureau to increase traffic safety.


While the policy allows for tows in circumstances where they were not permitted before, the policy does not require them in most cases. The policy specifically encourages Police Bureau members to exercise discretion in impounding vehicles under circumstances that may create undue hardship or risk to the occupants. Such circumstances may include, but are not limited to: the presence of young children, elderly, or disabled persons; vehicles equipped for use by such persons; and vehicles used as homes.


Members of the public are encouraged, before driving on public roads, to verify that their driver's license is current and valid and that they have current proof of insurance.


Every year, Portland Police officers respond to preventable collisions. These collisions can deeply impact those involved, their families and loved ones.


Future missions are being planned as resources allow. These missions typically will not be preannounced, so participants are warned that they are risking arrest, towed vehicles, and traffic tickets if they take part in illegal street racing or takeovers. The goal of these missions is to deter people from engaging in these illegal and dangerous activities that are often related to crashes, shootings and other criminal activity.

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