CLEVELAND -- A FOX 8 I TEAM camera rolled as city leader after city leader avoided our questions on a problem making Cleveland drivers more furious by the week. Why isn’t more being done about packs of dirt bikes taking over city streets?
We’ve shown you dozens of bikes swarming streets, ignoring traffic laws, even reportedly driving onto cars and kicking at cars. Cleveland Police officers have said their bosses don’t allow them to crack down on the bikes or chase the bikes.
We caught up to the police chief at a city council hearing, and we asked why the city allows this lawlessness on the streets. The chief told us to make an appointment to discuss it.
We also asked the same thing of the safety director. He also refused to answer and told us to make an appointment.
Earlier, we asked the same question, as well, of the city’s chief operating officer. He referred us to the Department of Public Safety. Yet, the top two people in public safety blew us off.
Chief Operating Officer Darnell Brown said the city is moving forward with plans to spend about $2 million on a dirt bike track to give the riders a place to take their dirt bikes. Yet Brown says that likely won’t be completed for about a year.
This week we also showed you activists are preparing a petition drive to try to block the building of the dirt bike track. They want to send this to voters to decide directly if the city should spend the money on the track.
Darnell Brown said he believes it’s too late for that since the project was already approved some time ago by city council. However, a council spokesperson says there is a process in place for an “initiative petition” although that process can be complicated.
Cleveland Police have said before they are working on a new policy for dealing with the dirt bikes. But again, no one was answering questions about it as we went to City Hall this time.
Even Cleveland council members have lost patience. Councilmen Jeff Johnson, Mike Polensek, and Brian Kazy all tried to raise complaints and concerns while we were there approaching members of the administration.