Sergeant Chris Perry said this is an issue the department has been dealing with for a few years now. They’ve formed task-forces and teamed up with area cities as it has become a regional problem. Now, the department is turning to social media and the public to try and catch those responsible.
“Now, we’re starting to implement the use of our dash cameras to provide video pictures that we can then post on social media and try to get the communities involvement, they’re just as fed up as we are,” Sgt. Perry said.
Newington resident Mike Amoruso said he’s found himself surrounded by a pack of the illegal joyriders far too many times.
“It’s very nerve-racking because they just weave in and out of cars. You just want to get off the road as quick as possible or take a turn because it’s dangerous,” Amoruso said.
The Newington Police Department posted a picture of one rider their officers spotted on Cedar Street Sunday, June 11, in the hopes that they receive information leading them to the driver and to an arrest.
“They’re driving recklessly. They’re causing issues not only with the danger to themselves but the other operators on the road that have to now negotiate around these people,” Sgt. Perry said.
Sgt. Perry also said there seems to be a pattern to the illegal activity. He said the group of ATV and bikes often make their way from Hartford through Newington into New Britain or the other way around. He added that the riders are mostly seen on Main and Cedar Streets, as well as Willard Avenue and the Berlin Turnpike.
“They’re blowing stop signs. They’re driving through red lights with blatant disregard for traffic safety,” Sgt. Perry explained.
Police also said that Sunday afternoons and evenings seems to be a common time for the illegal riders.