Police request more resources to stop sideshows in Vallejo

Bay Area

VALLEJO, Calif. (KRON) – A dangerous and hectic holiday weekend in Vallejo now has police asking for help.

Sideshows, gunshots, and illegal fireworks took over several streets on the 4th of July.

It’s part of Bay Area culture but it’s becoming a major problem.

Almost a dozen sideshows broke out across Vallejo Sunday night with around a thousand people taking part.

Police say they have limited resources to tackle this problem and they’re calling on city leaders to help them stop these spontaneous and dangerous events.

It’s an issue the Vallejo Police Department is trying to mitigate — Illegal sideshows that get destructive and violent.

“We understand that this is a large part of Bay Area culture, however, our position as a police department is to protect and serve,” Brittany K. Jackson said.

One way of doing that says Vallejo police spokesperson Brittany K. Jackson is establishing new ordinances in the city.

Vallejo’s police chief is working with the city attorney to make spectating at street races and reckless driving stunts illegal.  

“Participants and spectators could face fines of up to $1,000, including jail time of 6 months and their vehicles impounded for 30 days,” Jackson said.

People who promote sideshows may also face charges.

The Vallejo Police Department believes federal funding could help them address the dangerous exhibitions.

The money would be used to boost staffing, create a sideshow task force and improve technology.

Cameras would be set up in sideshow prone areas which could help to better identify the cars involved.

Police say the response to sideshows and associated crimes will take a concerted effort.

“That means thinking of creative ways and alternatives to really making sure that we can keep residents and community members safe,” Jackson said.

In the past, Vallejo police have teamed up with other agencies throughout Solano and Napa counties to crack down on sideshows but because of their spontaneous nature, the response to these street events could be improved.

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