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East Side resident says street racing ordinance is working

Posted at 9:04 PM, Jun 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-26 01:19:30-04

Back in April, the City of Tucson passed an ordinance to try and put a stop to street racing -- a problem throughout the city for years. The ordinance upped the punishment for the crime, making it a class one misdemeanor, and it also allows them to impound the vehicles involved.

"There were kind of, pockets around the community where this was occurring," Ward 6 Council Member Steve Kozachik said. "But now, we're focusing a spotlight on each of them."

One of those communities is on the East Side, where Craig Clark lives, just near Golf Links and Wilmot. He explained it used to be a hotspot for street racing, and it would keep him and his family up at night.

"It would be going on until 2:00 in the morning," Clark said. "You could hear them raving up and down Golf Links."

However, Clark says things have changed since the ordinance was passed a few months ago. This past Friday night was, "oddly quiet," and he didn't think anyone was out racing. He gives the credit to the city.

"Possibly the city ordinance and the police presence probably," he said. "I've noticed quite a bit more motorcycle policemen out here patrolling, so I think that's possibly curbed it."

Kozachik explained the ordinance allows for a much bigger punishment, hopefully enough to deter people from doing it in town.

"Now we have the hammer of being able to impound these guys' cars, which is their big boy toy, right?" He said. "So we're going to take it away from them if they continue this behavior."

The council member added it's a step in the right direction -- but his goal is to get it out of the city completely.

"It's just like any other public safety issue in this community," he said. "We have zero tolerance on it."

Clark said his quality of life has improved since April, but his main concern is that street racing causes a serious danger for everyone on the roads, drivers and pedestrians.

"It could create a massive accident," he said. "We don't need racing. Go do it on a race track where it's allowed."