St. Petersburg Police Crack Down on Street Racing After Teen Boy’s Death

By |2023-03-02T15:39:07-05:00March 2nd, 2023|Categories: In the Press|Tags: , , , |

The St. Petersburg Police Department is ramping up regulations on street racing following the death of 13-year-old Ethan Martin. A speeding motorcycle going at 100mph hit and killed the boy in January when the boy’s father took his son to an illegal race. The boy’s father, the motorcyclist, and the owner of the motorcycle have been arrested for charges related to the boy’s death.

The accident occurred on Gandy Boulevard, where police have previously worked with other agencies to address street racing. In response to the incident, police have posted signs at 109th Avenue North and 28th street. The signs are meant to inform the public that police will shut down illegal street racing.

Pinellas County and Other Police Departments Are Cracking Down on Street Racers

Yolanda Fernandez, the spokesperson for St. Petersburg police, has announced that the city will send patrol units to monitor problematic areas for racing. 28th Street North, Gandy Boulevard, 16th Street North, Dr. MLK Jr Street Borth, and Fourth North street have been identified by police as hot spots for illegal racing. Officers are set to rotate through these areas between 10 pm and 3 pm and have emergency lights to deter racing. St. Petersburg police will also send DUI units to monitor these areas.

While efforts from St. Petersburg Police have decreased street racing in the area, it hasn’t necessarily deterred street racers. Rather, they’ve moved their racing to different areas, like South Miami.

Many of the street racers and attendees are people from surrounding cities like Hillsborough, Hernando, and Pasco. As such, police in other areas have also started to buckle down on street racers. For example, Tampa Police arrested over 14 people in a street racing event in late January. Additionally, Hillsborough Police launched an anti-racing campaign earlier in February, which included over 150 traffic stops.

Street Racing is Illegal in Florida

Street racing, drag racing, and highway racing are illegal in Florida. This applies to all motor vehicles, including cars and motorcycles. Any person doing such activities is subject to face criminal charges. In addition, any passenger who knowingly rides in a passenger in a racing car can also face criminal charges. Lastly, promoting, scheduling, coordinating, or facilitating a race and collecting money at a race are also criminal offenses in Florida.

If you received a ticket for racing, you might need legal representation. Perhaps you were wrongfully accused of racing. Perhaps we can get the charge amended to a lesser charge. Whatever the case, a Florida criminal defense attorney can be advantageous. We know how to devise a strategy to keep you out of jail and protect your record.

Contact A Florida Criminal Defense Attorney Today

If you received a ticket or were arrested for racing, we might be able to help. Or, if you are facing criminal charges for any other traffic offense, we can answer all your questions. Contact us today for a free case review.

Sean McQuaid