Dirt bikes, ATVs have become nuisance in Camden

Illegal street vehicles such as dirt bikes and ATVs have become a dangerous nuisance on the roadways in Camden, according to police and locals.

"I'm a new mother, I have a small child that I'm raising here in the city of Camden, and I'm happy to do it, this is my city, but I don't have to stand for this. Instead I feel like it's time to stand up to them," Vedra Chandler said. 

Police are aware of the public's concern. On Friday Camden police were joined by Mayor Frank Moran at a public forum to address the city's all terrain vehicle problem. 

"They are absolutely a nuisance to our community and with their reckless behavior have caused property damage, injury and even death," Mayor Moran said.

Police used YouTube videos of riders dangerously maneuvering through the streets as evidence of the dangers posed by the riders. 

“We are forced to take these drastic measures to send a strong message that we are no longer going to tolerate this kind of activity in the city of Canton because it is not safe," State Senator Nilsa Cruz said.

With help from an anonymous crime reporting app called Stop-It, Camden County police have impounded 29 Illegal legal dirt bikes and ATVs since the beginning of April.

Pending legislation in Trenton would increase fines and penalties against owners and riders, and make it easier for authorities to seize illegal vehicles.

Still, police in Camden are hamstrung by the same policies Philadelphia officers face. Officers are not permitted to engage dirt bike or ATVs when they are out on the street for fear that a high speed chase would elevate an already dangerous situation.

"These are quality-of-life issues, but we will not risk Public Safety to try and apprehend these drivers," Camden police Lieutenant Zsakhiem James said.

Police say dirt bikes and ATVs have already caused eight accidents in Camden so far this year, and fed-up locals hope neighbors will use the Stop-It app to thwart future joy rides.