Ride of the Century 2013 is no more, and last week police made it abundantly clear they would be taking a much harder look at this year's ride and its riders. Arrest data released by the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department today seems to back up their earlier bluster: There were 47 total arrests and 58 motorcycles towed over the four-day Labor Day weekend. The action began Thursday night when 23 motorcyclists were arrested near I-70 by Salisbury for "careless and reckless driving," and the following days brought more arrests and two deaths -- one involving a rider who allegedly clipped an unmarked cop car on Saturday night.
Here are the official stats from the metro police department:
Thursday, August 29, 2013
Arrests - 23 for Careless and Reckless Driving
24 - motorcycles towed
Friday, August 30, 2013
Arrests - 9
8 - Careless and Reckless Driving
1 - Receiving stolen Property + Careless and Reckless Driving (stolen engine on bike)
9 - motorcycles towed
Saturday, August 31
Sunday, September 1, 2013
5 - Tampering 1st Degree (operating a stolen motorcycle)
10 - Various Traffic Charges
25 - Towed motorcycles 5 - Recovered Stolen 10 - Various Traffic Charges 9 - No Plates/Registration/Insurance 1 - Abandoned motorcycle
Total Arrests over four-day period - 47
Total Motorcycles towed over four-day period - 58
Daily RFT also heard from the St. Louis County Police Department, which made six arrests and towed eight motorcycles from Friday afternoon through Sunday night. According to a spokesperson, all arrests were made for registration violations, and two motorcycles were towed from hotel parking lots at the request of the hotel managers for "missing/not on file VIN's." Though no citations or arrests were made for moving violations (that is, stunting on the highway), Randy Vaughn, county police spokesman, tells Daily RFT that there were three incidents of motorcyclists who opted to make a break for it rather than stop for officers.
Responding to widespread concern from riders that police were profiling motorcyclists and harassing innocent riders as well as those breaking the law, Vaughn says, "I understand their point of view in that I would expect that a great majority of the riders coming for the event are law-abiding citizens. But if you've got 100 people riding down the road together, and you've got ten of them stunting on the highway? Honestly, if you want to sleep with dogs it's hard to complain about fleas."
Daily RFT also received preliminary arrest statistics from the Missouri State Highway Patrol covering Friday to Sunday:
19 registration citations
9 no motorcycle endorsement
7 no insurance
8 no driver's license or suspended/revoked
2 misdemeanor warrant arrests
2 misdemeanor drug arrests
1 charged for tampering (1st degree)
1 charge resisting arrest
7 seatbelt violations (escort vehicles)
20 bikes towed
Here's some footage of the ride posted on YouTube.
Continue for more photos of the stunts in Columbia, Illinois.