STOCKTON, Calif. — The San Joaquin County Multi-Agency Sideshow Taskforce is back for 2019 and warning about the dangers of sideshows.
"People need to remember they're not professional drivers," said Joe Silva, Stockton Police Department Public Information Officer. "We've seen tragedies occur where they'll lose control over their vehicle and the vehicle will go into the crowd and injure people."
The task force started in 2017. In 2018, they arrested 118 people. Most often in San Joaquin County, the sideshows start in parking lots.
"What they'll do is overtake the whole parking lot and we've received complaints from the business owners because, when that happens, the customers don't wanna go to the business because they're fearful for their safety," Silva said.
The task force was able to stop two sideshows from happening this year. Sometimes they're able to know ahead of time by finding it online.
"A lot of people think it's stalking teenagers in Stockton and people participating in this illegal type of behavior, but when we actually make arrests and contact people we've seen people as far away as Los Angeles that are here," Silva said. "People from the Bay Area, San Francisco, and San Jose and also Sacramento that would come here."
If you are caught in a sideshow, Silva recommends to call 911 and try to get to a safe location. You can submit tips on the Stockton Police Facebook Page and tipsters can call anonymously to 209-946-0600.
There is a cash reward from Crime Stoppers for information that leads to an arrest of any participant who has a firearm at a sideshow. It's up to $10,000.
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