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Denver Police use helicopter to find illegal street races

A citation for drag racing in Denver could come with 12 points off your license, a $999 fine and vehicle impoundment.

DENVER — The Denver Police Department (DPD) has cited 17 drivers for illegal street racing from Jan. 1 to March 17, and drivers can expect further enforcement as the weather gets warmer. 

This year's number is actually down from last year. Between Jan. 1 and March 15, 2020, 23 arrests were made for street racing, according to DPD.  

DPD said it “continually monitors for street racing events” and has spent several months using its helicopter to find and disrupt potential street racing gatherings.

A warning from the department was posted on Facebook Friday afternoon, ahead of a warm weekend and the summer season, which DPD says usually involves more street racing activity.

“Drag racing continues to be a safety concern for motorists as high speeds increase the likelihood of injury and death in crashes,” DPD wrote on Facebook. “Additionally, large gatherings where these occur can increase the likelihood of injury and death.”

DPD said on Feb. 6, an officer patrolling near Interstate 25 and Downing Street saw two vehicles slow down to 45 mph before quickly accelerating, with one of the cars clocking speeds near 108 mph.

The 25-year-old man driving that car was cited for drag racing, and his car was detained and will be held until August.

A drag racing citation could come with a 12-point traffic violation and up to $999 fines.

DPD’s warning comes after Aurora Police said 600-800 cars were blocking I-225 the night of March 7 amid reports of people racing and holding weapons. 

RELATED: Police seek illegal street racing pictures, video from I-225 incident

RELATED: Aurora Police: Racing, weapons reported after 600-800 cars block I-225

Aurora Mayor Mike Coffman later said racing was a "growing issue in the metro area." 

Police have since asked for the community's help providing photos and videos of the incident in hopes of making arrests.  

To report street racing or planned events that organize illegal street racing, visit ReportStreetRacing.com. Also, to report street racing or reckless driving by phone, witnesses should call 720-913-2000 or call/text 911.

For more information on Denver's drag racing ordinance, visit https://bit.ly/3l4jnHo.

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