Home News Sideshows reported in Antioch, Oakland and West Contra Costa

Sideshows reported in Antioch, Oakland and West Contra Costa


Sideshows reported in Antioch, Oakland and West Contra Costa

Antioch leaders are speaking out after sideshows hit their city and other East Bay areas over this past weekend.

Officials said sideshows took place in Antioch, Oakland and unincorporated West Contra Costa County. No injuries were reported.

An estimated 200 people blocked the intersection of Lone Tree Way and Golf Course Road in Antioch early Sunday morning as cars spun donuts, and spectators shot off rounds of fireworks, authorities said. But Mayor Lamar Hernandez-Thorpe said that unlike in other cities, police quickly shut the sideshow down and dispersed the crowd – within 40 minutes or so.

A sideshow was also reported in Oakland’s Temescal area at 51st Street and Telegraph Avenue. Another sideshow with fireworks and cars spinning donuts took place near Hercules, on Franklin Canyon Road near the golf course.

Hernandez-Thorpe warned those involved in the illegal street activities in Antioch will be held accountable.

“We’re not messing around with anybody,” the mayor said. “If you come here and disturb the peace, you’re going to be held accountable.”

Hernandez-Thorpe said the city used drones to capture license plate numbers and will use footage to cite and fine violators and tow and impound vehicles. The process can take up to a few weeks but it will happen, he said, adding that more officers have been added to the patrol unit.

On Tuesday, the city took another step to discourage sideshows downtown by installing an electric fence at the large parking lot at the marina. Hernandez-Thorpe said the lot will be locked at night and not opened until the morning. New traffic barriers near Dozier-Libbey High School in southeast Antioch have also helped to prevent illegal street activities where Sand Creek Road dead ends, he said.

In February, the Antioch City Council unanimously approved a first reading of an ordinance that would allow fines of up to $1,000 and up to six months of jail time for those who organize or advertise any illegal street races, sideshows and reckless driving events. But on the second reading, which is usually a formality on the consent calendar, Councilmembers Mike Barbanica and Lori Ogorchock reversed course, saying it was not enough and the new rules were struck down.

Barbanica said at the time that he wanted to include a way to cite spectators.

The mayor, meanwhile, promised to put the sideshow ordinance back on the agenda when there’s a full council present. Both he and Councilwoman Tamisha Torres-Walker were absent when it was last heard on March 12.

Check back for updates.

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