MPD cracking down on drag racing, drugs and weapons being found

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Memphis has seen an increase of drag racing on the street.

Memphis Police confiscated more than 60 cars, motorcycles and ATV’s and arrested more than 127 people.

FOX13 obtained a video that showed when MPD has to break up a gathering of people accused of drag racing at a parking lot after hours in Berclair on Summer Ave.

MPD told us it has to stop and drag racing can lead to accidents and people in the hospital.

But during this crackdown, they also found weapons and drugs.

Monday, we asked Memphis Police if a cable show on drag racing that focused on Memphis is what’s driving this.

If the gunshots didn’t scare you then people driving crazy in a closed strip mall parking lot should.

This happened the first weekend of May on Summer Ave. but police said it’s happening all over the city.

“Individuals have decided to travel to Memphis, as well as some of our residents to commit reckless driving acts,” said Col. Keith Watson, Memphis Police Traffic Operations.

Our FOX13 cameras caught the aftermath of some cars accused of drag racing in south Memphis a couple of weeks ago.

One of the vehicles crashed into an MPD cruiser. The officer not seriously hurt but Memphis Police tell me it could have been worse.

“It is anywhere from property damage to a person losing their life,” Watson said.

We asked Watson if this show on the Discovery Channel called “Street outlaws: Memphis”, a documentary reality show about drag racing in Memphis, is fueling the illegal racing here.

“I think some of that footage shown on that particular show has something to do with the general public seeing it and want to be part of it,” Watson said.

What the documentary may not show is the recent action by Memphis Police to stop drag racing.

The department told us it arrested at least 127 people and found drugs and weapons.

More than 60 vehicles confiscated that MPD may not return to the owners if connected to a crime.

“Those cars may have a hold on them by a particular bureau if not organized crime for those purposes,” Watson said.

We emailed the producers of Street Outlaws for comment and they declined.

As for as those cars being seized, MPD told us they will present their case to a judge to allow them to keep or sell them.