TWO police officers have been injured and 15 illegal off-road bikes seized as West Midlands Police say ‘enough is enough’ to illegal off-road bikers in a series of dawn raids.
In the latest clampdown on dangerous riders in the borough, officers raised addresses across Chelmsley Wood, Hodge Hill, Sheldon last Sunday (July 31), seizing 15 bikes and finally giving some peace of mind to communities plagued by illegally ridden off-road bikes.
Drugs and weapons were also recovered from some properties as officers arrested seven people – aged between 17 and 30 – on suspicion of offences ranging from causing a public nuisance, criminal damage, public order and possession of drugs.
Two officers were injured in the raids – one when a biker deliberately drove into them – but both are said to be recovering well.
Last weekend’s pre-planned operation is just the latest in a force-wide clampdown on illegal and potentially dangerous off-road vehicles, which has seen more than 60 seized by police in the last few months.
It follows numerous reports from residents across the borough plagued by quad bikes, scramblers and motorbikes being driven in an anti-social manner – including one case which saw a pedestrian suffer a fractured foot after being hit by an off-road bike.
Chief Inspector Jack Hadley, who has been central to West Midlands Police’s campaign against illegal off-road vehicles, said: “The message to off-road bikers is very clear: enough is enough.
“We have been patient and tried to speak to those involved to warn about the dangers of their actions – but such unacceptable behaviour must now stop.
“There is a huge amount of work going on across West Midlands Police into tackling this menace on our communities.
“This isn’t always visible to the public – like the operation today – but everyone should be reassured we are taking action.”
But Ch Insp Hadley explained the operation would not have been possible without the continued support of affected communities – helping police by supplying them with information about the bikers.
He added: “We need the help of our communities to tell us who is responsible so we can find them and take them to court.
“We are working alongside our partners including local councillors to stamp down on this issue.”
Anyone with information is urged to call police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.