21 arrests, 20 cars towed from Antioch sideshow
Antioch police, councilman share photos, warn participants, spectators they’re “subject to up to 90 days in county jail and fines up to $1,000. Several license plates were obtained… as…vehicles fled the scene…will be followed up on, warrants will be written, and…towed for 30 days.”
By Sergeant Rob Green #3639, Antioch Police Field Services Bureau
On Saturday, May 22, 2021, over 150 cars converged into several areas in Contra Costa County and engaged in several side shows. The vehicles eventually took over the intersection of West 10th Street and Auto Center Drive. There were several vehicles doing donuts in the intersection and the parking lot of Arco Gas Station near the gas pumps.
There were over 100 vehicles and close to 200 spectators in this intersection, several blocking the path of patrol vehicles. The spectators set off fireworks and at times threw fireworks at patrol vehicles and pointed high powered lasers at officers. Mutual aid was requested and several officers from Brentwood, Pittsburg and the Sheriff’s Office responded to assist in dispersing the crowd. Several vehicles continued to drive recklessly, and a vehicle nearly ran over an officer who was on foot. APD officers were able to stop a group of the vehicles with the help of the allied agencies. 20 subjects were issued citations and 21 vehicles were placed on 30-day tows from this scene.
The remaining group of vehicles entered the City of Brentwood where the vehicles took over the intersection of Lone Tree Way and HWY 4. Several vehicles made it into the City of Oakley and at approximately 1:09 AM, Oakley PD officers had bottles thrown at them from occupants from a vehicle that fled back into Antioch. Antioch Officers located a vehicle that matched the description, and a traffic stop was attempted. The vehicle fled from officers at a high rate of speed onto Hillcrest Avenue where it lost control and crashed. The driver of that vehicle fled on foot and was caught by officers a short distance later. The subject was arrested for an outstanding warrant and his vehicle was towed for 30-days.
At approximately 1:32 AM, more than 50 vehicles took over the intersection of Buchanan Road and Somersville Road and started another side show. Officers responded to the area; however, the group continued the side show despite the presence of law enforcement. After several minutes, the vehicles eventually dispersed in several different directions. At approximately 2:32 AM, APD officers responded into the City of Pittsburg to assist PPD with a large side show that resulted in several shots being fired by subjects in the side show.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Antioch Police Department non-emergency line at (925) 778-2441 or Detective Bledsoe at (925) 779-6884. You may also text-a-tip to 274637 (CRIMES) using the key word ANTIOCH.
Antioch Police Department – May 23, 2021 – As many of you have seen by now through social media or other news media outlets, there was a large-scale side show in East Contra Costa County that touched the cities of Antioch, Pittsburg, Oakley, and Brentwood for several hours Saturday night, May 22. While we were able to head off several of the participants before anything could get started, eventually the crowd was able to overtake the intersection of Auto Center Drive and W. 10th Street with several hundred vehicles and spectators. Mutual aid was requested due to the large numbers involved, and eventually officers from the Pittsburg Police, Brentwood Police and Sheriff’s Office responded and we were able to disperse the crowd. Over the course of the next several hours, other smaller side shows popped up in Antioch and surrounding cities until the early morning hours.
These events have become more prevalent in recent months in our city and present many problems aside from the noise and traffic violations. They not only put the participants at risk of death or injury, but also the public should they get caught amid one of these intersections that have been taken over. These events also create traffic issues for police and medical responses to true emergency calls as well, and the Antioch Police Department has taken a zero-tolerance response to such activity. During Saturday night’s events alone, 20 citations were issued, and 21 vehicles were towed and stored for 30 days for those in attendance who were able to be stopped. So everyone is aware, participating in these events, including being a spectator or helping block intersections so these events may continue is subject to up to 90 days in county jail and fines up to $1000. Additionally, whether you are actively participating or spectating, your vehicle will be towed and stored at your expense for 30 days. These costs will run into the thousands of dollars and may also lead to a driver’s license suspension.
For those of you that believe you got out of town last night before being stopped by the police, be aware that this may be true for some, but not all of you. Several license plates were obtained last night as dozens of vehicles fled the scene. These vehicles will be followed up on, warrants will be written, and those vehicles will also be towed for 30 days.
To summarize the events from last night, these events will not be tolerated in the City of Antioch, and all participants and spectators will be met with all enforcement action allowed under the California Vehicle Code. Thank you to all the agencies that responded to our mutual aid request and helped us in our efforts to keep Antioch safe. It is greatly appreciated.
Councilman Comments, Posts Photos of Damage
District 2 Councilman Mike Barbanica was the only Antioch council member to post anything about the sideshows, one of which occurred in District one, on his official Facebook page. On Sunday, he wrote, “I went out today and visited some of the locations from the recent side shows. I very BIG thank you to the APD Sgt. and crew that took a zero tolerance stance on this, having more than 20 cars towed on 30 day impounds, more than 20 citations and warrants coming for more cars also to be impounded for 30 days. We cannot tolerate this in our community. This is unsafe and is a matter of time before someone is seriously injured or killed. GREAT JOB APD! Also thank you to the allied agencies that came into our community to help.”
Allen Payton contributed to this report.