Police stop late-night “drag racers”

Chad Hamblin

University Police stopped two cars “drag racing” on Kasota Avenue Southeast, on May 29 and found approximately 50 more cars “apparently waiting to race,” according to police reports.

At approximately 10:25 p.m., a police officer on a routine patrol saw two cars “drag racing” and pulled one of the cars over, according to one of the reports.

The other car, as witnessed by another police officer, turned north onto Kasota Circle and sped through an industrial parking lot at approximately 50 miles per hour, according to the reports.

The officer followed the car as it turned east on Kasota Avenue, nearly colliding with two eastbound cars, the reports said.

Police gave careless driving citations to the two drivers, Bradley Thomas and Zachary Wiers.

University Deputy Police Chief Steve Johnson said careless driving in that area has been a problem for a few years. It happens mostly during the summer and on weekends, he said.

“They are racing there on the streets side by side, which is very dangerous,” he said.

He also said recent road construction in the area might contribute to the careless driving.

“It’s hard to get in and out of there, so it’s probably encouraging people to use the street,” he said.

The officers stayed in the area until all the other vehicles left, according to the reports.

“Cars are hanging out in

the parking lots of businesses,” Johnson said. “They have no business being there. Those aren’t public.”

In Minnesota, careless driving that does not result in an accident is a misdemeanor. It does not require a court appearance and carries a $180 fine. The violation appears on driving records.

Bike Accident

A bicyclist on East River Road ran into the back of a car and was taken to Hennepin County Medical Center on Thursday.

The victim of the accident, Brooks Grossinger, wore a helmet but suffered a large wound on the back of his head, according to a police report.

Grossinger and a companion were riding down East River Road when the car in front of Grossinger stopped to make a right turn, according to the report. He then hit the car and slid underneath it.

Grossinger’s father said he was discharged from the hospital and is recovering. However, Grossinger is “pretty lucky,” he said.

University Police Lt. Charles Miner said although there are many bicyclists on campus, there are not many bike accidents.

“Occasionally we have bicyclists who don’t yield to cars who think they have the right of way when they don’t, which causes problems,” Miner said.

“But it’s fairly rare,” he added. “Generally, it’s very safe to bicycle here.”

Campus Theft

Judy Beniak, director of the Health Careers Center, reported a Panasonic LCD projector and a Dell laptop battery pack stolen from Moos Tower. The theft occurred sometime between May 28 and June 1.

According to police reports, all the doors were locked, and five to 10 people have keys to the room. There was no sign of forced entry.

The combined value of the projector and the battery pack is estimated at $3,800.