CHICAGO – In response to the increase of overnight street takeovers, state Rep. La Shawn K. Ford, D-Chicago, has introduced a proposal to expand the state’s mob action laws to include illegal street racing and other racing stunts.
“It’s alarming how often we’re seeing new videos on social media of drivers recklessly doing tricks in the middle of intersections, inches away from a crowd of onlookers,” Ford said. “As things are going, it is only a matter of time before we see people get killed or seriously injured. These takeovers appear to be coordinated, and we need to start holding people accountable.”
Ford’s House Bill 5797 comes in reaction to repeated late-night street takeovers in Chicago, where large groups of people watch drivers street race, perform donuts and other stunts with their vehicles. Such incidents have garnered significant attention on social media, and have been an increasing nuisance for area residents.
Ford’s plan would enable prosecutors to charge suspects in these incidents with mob action, a Class 4 felony. The proposal builds on earlier action this year by Ford under House Bill 5439, which explicitly prohibited street sideshows and criminalized interfering with the movement of traffic for street racing, sideshows or stunts. Ford’s House Bill 5439 was signed into law by Gov. J.B. Pritzker and will take effect Jan. 1, 2023.
“This kind of illegal activity is a detriment to surrounding neighbors, and they shouldn’t have to put up with it,” Ford said. “Beyond the noise, these illegal street closures can impact emergency services and cause other problems. It needs to stop now.”
For more information, please contact RepFord@LaShawnFord.com
Visit Rep. LaShawn K. Ford’s website
239-E Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 557-4502 FAX
5051 W Chicago Ave.
Chicago, IL 60651