Stupid driving? Call the police, save a life

Last updated 08:30 24/11/2011

This week, a motorcyclist caught riding his motocrosser and popping wheelies around his neighbourhood with his three-year-old son on the petrol tank has been given five years and four months in jail for the offence, which was made worse by the fact that neither wore a helmet and the plonker at the handlebars didn't have a licence.

Good decision, I reckon, and certainly better than reading about the death of the child.

This, of course, was not in New Zealand, where not having a licence is regarded as meaning you have nothing to lose, and riding motorcross bikes on neighbours' grassy suburban berms is seen merely as  "horsing around".

No, it was in Britain, where the offences were seen from a police helicopter, and justice was meted out quickly and neatly.

The reason I use the words "horsing around" is because that was the phrase used to describe the actions of a 14-year-old from down our street who terrorised the neighbourhood two years ago at Christmas time, rapping his CR450 Honda motocrosser up and down the street, on the pavement and on the grass verge for several hours, and narrowly missing reversing motorists trying to exit their own driveways.

Call me a curmudgeon, but I rang to complain. His dad old me he couldn't do much about it, as he was merely "horsing around" and was doing no one any harm.

Well, he obviously meant ME some, though, as the little scrote gave me the fingers every time he blasted past on his bike after that, fearless, licencelCrashbikeess and, by dint of his parents' lenient attitude, impervious to any sense of potential consequences or responsibility.

I know, he didn't balance a child on his fuel tank or stuff like that, but a fat fine and confiscation of the bike for a month would at least have caused him to think again. The "severe talking to" I was assured had taken place didn't have any effect at all.

They've moved now, thank heaven, but I haven't forgotten. The divots and tracks carved out by the Honda have mostly gone now, though you can still detect them if you look hard.

One "I told you so" I hope I never have to utter will be the one that could come to mind when I hear news of our scrote finally having fatally collected a wee four- or five-year-old victim on his intrepid berm-to-berm two-wheeled suburban safari in another suburb. Even then, he'd pobably not get five years.

When the curtains twitch, and talkback callers ask "Why didn't the neighbours DO anything?" I'll just shake my head, and say "We did try, but no one was particularly interested."

Next time, I'll call the police - which I guess is what I should have done in the first place.

Let it go, Dave, let it go...

Follow Dave Moore on Twitter - @mooretothepoint

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Katie   #1   08:48 am Nov 24 2011

I agree with you completely. Years ago I called the cops on some tools doing that near my place (with no helmets and nearly hitting pedestrians and cars). Turned out they had stolen the bike anyway. I guess they were lucky they only got arrested - could have been arrested AND had a serious head injury.

Jody Seabright   #2   08:55 am Nov 24 2011

Funny you should write this now. Only yesterday Stuff ran this article of what happens when the small scrote becomes a big scrote. http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/6015040/Decision-to-flee-police-nearly-cost-life No amount of training or education will fix this type of stupidity, only an attitude adjustment will. And I'm not seeing that happening any time soon....... The question now is how to keep this idiot away from our families when we are on the roads.

Vicki   #3   08:57 am Nov 24 2011

I often call the police for things like this and find it effective. After a boy was holding a toy gun out the window, aiming it at passing cars and pretending to shoot all while not wearing his seatbelt I decided to call the police. I suggested it was probably a toy gun but couldn't tell from where I was. The AOS was called out and the mother driving the car got the stern talking to she required.

Karlos   #4   09:14 am Nov 24 2011

And it always seems to be an innocent victim who dies or gets severely injured while the idiot behind the wheel walks away with a slap on the hand as punishment!

Beki   #5   09:21 am Nov 24 2011

Call the police. It's idiots like that who give motorcyclists a bad name, and as a motorcyclist myself it makes me furious. Join a club, ride in the proper areas, and learn some skills.

And if you have a stupid bikie neighbour, nothing stops them faster than a water balloon to the face as they scream past. "Severe talking-to's" from parents fade a lot faster than the pain of gravel rash...just saying..and as for the legality of that, why, you were just having harmless fun and horsing around right?

Mark   #6   09:27 am Nov 24 2011

The thing is, although most of us are on the side of safety and common sense; the idiots we are talking about only think about themselves. It is intrinsically selfish of these people to keep doing what they are doing with no regard for others around them. People like this are the dumbest of the dumb. You can call it horsing around, but the bottom line is that there is horsing around, and then there is putting others in danger.

If they dont respect others, or other peoples property, or respect authority (such simple lessons that parents usually teach their children) then not only should the kids be held responsible, but their parents should also. And they should all be sent to phsychiatrists to get that attitude sorted out.

Do only to others as what you would have done to you. Right?

That kid Benjamin Eden got what he deserved. Sure he almost died, but if his parents had taught him to respect authority then maybe he would have pulled over and recieved a ticket instead of deciding to "have some fun", inciting officers with the fingers and ultimately crashing his car into a pole. Or better yet he would have respected the law/road rules instead of "horsing around" in a 1.5tonne metal object. Honestly how can the parents blame police for not abandoning pursuit? Are they that stupid?

The answer is yes. Yes they are.

Mark   #7   09:31 am Nov 24 2011

I live on a junction of a fairly busy residential street. In the wet, or on Saturday nights, it becomes the place for about 1 in 10 drivers to show that they have poor car control, and a heavy right foot, as they deliberately squeal their tyres, and pump their accelerator up and down. Presumably trying to imitate their favourite D1 or V8 driver, only with none of the talent, skill, common sense or courtesy that those professional drivers, on closed courses, have.

Jim   #8   09:33 am Nov 24 2011

They're not motorcyclists.

Iz   #9   09:33 am Nov 24 2011

Couldn't agree with you more. The lack of discipline in society right from a classroom level to the level that you talk about here means that scrotes (little and big) run rampant in the knowledge that there will be no repercussions. Call me archaic in my views but I'm only 22!

Colin   #10   09:43 am Nov 24 2011

In agreement with Jody Seabright #2, surely the guy in that article is a prime candidate for car crushing? OK he's done a pretty good job of that himself but when the insurance company buy him a new one, the police should take it away and crush it! This is the sort of idiot who must be kept off our roads at all costs. Whatever is takes, crush his cars, throw him behind bars if need be. These peole don't understand that the game they are playing is with people's lives. Either that or they just don't care. The law should show as much contempt for them as they show for us!


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