The Denver Police Department destroyed an impounded 2007 Honda motorcycle Thursday. Although such vehicles are typically sent to auction, DPD arranged this bombastic display to send a message to lawbreaking motorcyclists as well as to keep its owner from using the bike to endanger the public, as he is alleged to have done last summer.
The owner, whom police have identified as Clinton Hawkins, is still awaiting trial. After Hawkins failed to respond to a separate civil nuisance case, filed Sept. 12, the court handed the bike over to the police department to be destroyed.
Police seized the bike during their investigation of the “Kill Da Streetz” rally last summer, which saw hundreds of motorcyclists shut down northbound Interstate 25, “among other reckless and unsafe riding actions.”
Using photo and video evidence, largely pulled from social media, the Denver Police Department identified Hawkins and two others in connection with the rally. Hawkins is awaiting trial by jury to face accusations of speed exhibition and reckless driving. Ryan Easton, another rider, has already plead guilty to charges.
“We want to stress to the motorcycle community not to get involved with these type of ad hoc social media phenomenon,” said Lieutenant Robert Rock of the Denver Police Department.
“Shutting down an interstate highway with motorcycles is one of the most dangerous things you could possibly do. We don’t care what kind of statement you are trying to make. It’s illegal, it is unacceptable.”
Last summer’s “Kill da Streetz” was the second annual demonstration to promote safety and awareness of motorcyclists on highways. The police department plans to do more than destroy one bike in order to prevent a third disruption.
Working with community tips and social media, several department units are monitoring the situation. In the event that another event does get planned, Rock said three units, in addition to the Traffic Enforcement Unit, will be dispatched to manage it.
The bike was destroyed about 11 a.m.Thursday at Iron and Metals on N. Franklin. A second bike has been released and a third is still making its way through the system.
Andrew Kenney contributed to the reporting of this story.