'Hand gesture' by motorcyclists caught OPP's eye
The OPP say a "hand gesture" helped draw the attention of officers to a group of motorcyclists travelling on Highway 410 in Brampton.
"It just said in the report from the officer 'a hand gesture,' so I don't know if it's the middle finger or what it was," OPP Sgt. Dave Woodford told ctvtoronto.ca on Monday.
In any event, the motorcyclists are alleged to have "just took off flying" while moving south on Highway 410 at 11:46 p.m. on Friday, Woodford said.
An OPP officer pursued them. Woodford said it wasn't possible to get a speed reading because the officer wasn't set up for radar.
The chase moved onto Highway 401 before the motorcyclists exited at Mavis Road.
Unfortunately for the cyclists, there was a red light.
"As officers approached, they heard one of the riders yell Go, Go, Go," a news release said.
"Two of the bikes sped off at a high speed running along the left curb, the third bike split between the two lanes between stopped vehicles. The officers were able to enter the intersection blocking the path of the bike. The driver attempted to get away but immediately stopped by the officers."
Alen Alkhas, 29, of Brampton faces the following charges
- dangerous operation of a motor vehicle
- flight from police
- stunt driving
- operation of a motor vehicle without insurance
- obstruct licence plate
Alken was released on an appearance notice, but police are holding a 2003 motorcycle pending a decision on whether it should be seized as a property-related offence, police said.
Woodford said the OPP is trying to focus on high-performance motorcyclists who engage in stunt driving on the highways.
"They have a greater opportunity of evading us because of the speed they're going, but they can also go in and out of traffic very easily, and it's not as easy with the cruiser," he said.
The OPP patrol aircraft is helping police crack down on speeding motorcyclists, he said.
Woodford noted when such motorcycles get into a collision, "the outcome is usually deadly," because of the motorcycle's speed and the lack of protection for the rider.
To illustrate that point, Peel Regional police are asking the public for help with an investigation of an early Sunday crash that left two motorcyclists in critical condition.
The male motorcycle driver with a female passenger was heading north on Kingswood Drive in Brampton at 3 a.m.. Another man was driving a Chevrolet Blazer southbound.
"As a result of circumstances still under investigation, the two vehicles collided. The collision resulted in the motorcycle catching fire - which was extinguished by witnesses," a news release said.
The motorcyclists are currently in trauma centres. "The driver of the Chevrolet Blazer was taken to a local area hospital for precautionary reasons," it said.
Police ask anyone with information to call the Major Collision Bureau at (905) 453-2121, ext. 3710. Anonymous tips can be left with Peel Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), by visiting its website at www.peelcrimestoppers.ca, or by sending a text message to 'CRIMES' (274637).