Saint-Claude and Saint-Roch, a mecca for stunt driving
A resident estimates the crowd and stuntmen remained at the intersection for approximately 30 minutes before the first NOPD officer arrived on the scene.
NEW ORLEANS — Cell phone videos of dangerous driving in New Orleans are all over the internet. At least four illegal encounters were widely publicized on social media over the weekend.
The messages called for about half a dozen Baton Rouge-based groups to take over New Orleans Sunday afternoon and evening. A video showed a pop-up on Saint-Claude and Saint-Roch avenues.
“Cars were drifting around the center, sometimes they were making perfect donuts, some seemed a little more out of control,” said Noe Regules, a vendor at nearby St. Roch Market. “There were a lot of people really approaching the vehicles.”
Regules estimates the crowd and the stuntmen remained at the intersection for about 30 minutes before the NOPD first officer arrived on the scene. He said the way the crowd treated the lone officer was sad and disrespectful.
“When the crowd was pushed back by the vehicle, that’s when people jumped on the car, even attacking the car, kicking the car, some of them throwing bottles on the car.”
Regules says reinforcements arrived about eight minutes later and the crowd and stuntmen dispersed. Albert Boggs is working on a building next to the intersection. He says stunt shows are becoming more common in the neighborhood.
“This intersection, the next intersection on the right and the other big intersection on the left, they just park in an intersection and do donuts like it’s a movie or something and it’s not,” said Boggs said. “People get hurt.”
Cell phone videos also showed blocked traffic and cars burning rubber at Chef Highway and Downman Road in East New Orleans.
Another showed a group of armed youths pointing high-powered firearms at a pop-up on Annunciation and Calliope streets near the convention center.
Blaine Kern, Jr. has an event production business nearby.
“It scares me,” Kern said. “I’ve been here 30 years and my wife has a business next door where she has a lot of talent that comes and goes at different times of the day. So, I’m extremely nervous about this happening here.
Back in Saint-Roch, Regules is still trying to figure out why people want to participate in these illegal stunts.
“I just wanted to know what the goal was,” Regules said. ” I did not understand. I guess at the very least, I’m just thankful no one was hurt.
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