Ahead of the Labor Day weekend, Chicago police announced that they impounded at least seven vehicles accused of participating in illegal street racing last week, and said that nearly four dozen more have been targeted for impound.
According to a social media post, authorities said that the vehicles were impounded in accordance with new stricter penalties against illegal street racing.
During the ensuing week, police said that they have identified at least 44 other vehicles that are set to be impounded for participating in the illegal activity.
The crackdown comes after the Chicago City Council passed an ordinance to increase penalties on illegal street racing across the city.
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Even with steeper fines of up to $10,000 and the threat of impounded vehicles, the problem has since continued to plague neighborhoods across Chicago -- and while the ordinance is a good first step, police say, the consequences aren't strong enough.
"Drag racing, street racing is not new in this city," Chicago Police Supt. David Brown said Monday during a press conference. "It's just reached a really a fever pitch, with people increasingly becoming more violent toward cops. What we're all concerned about is not only drag racers, but harming someone by losing control of a car, and some innocent bystanders or spectators being hit by these cars going at very high rates of speed."
"I think what the council has started doing as far as looking at ordinances that can hold these people more accountable, primarily taking their cars," Brown continued. "We need to do more of that."
A rash of weekend street racing incidents were reported throughout Chicago, and even with impounds and at least nine arrests, Brown says that police are just getting started.
"As long as there are no consequences, this behavior will continue," Brown said.