By on December 1, 2014


As much as people dog on Oakland, it is certainly exciting, hilarious, and raw– all at the same time.

A confluence of events led to the greatest car chase ever caught on tape. The grand jury’s decision in Ferguson caused rioting and looting in Downtown Oakland on Monday and the Temescal neighborhood of Oakland (think Williamsburg West) on Tuesday. Opportunistic asshats figured that since all law enforcement assets would be busy elsewhere Wednesday night, they could put together a sideshow at the Port of Oakland a couple of miles away, unmolested. They were wrong.

The California Highway Patrol’s office in Oakland had called in many of their Ford Explorer and Crown Victoria units from all over Northern California to assist the Oakland Police Department in mutual aid to keep the peace. Police and news station helicopters were also on hand overhead to cover the action on the streets.

Through social media, the CHP learned of the sideshow at the port. Dozens of black and whites and the local channel 7 news helicopter flew to the scene. The police cars blocked the 150 cars and 200-plus participants and gawkers from both ends and a side street. Trapped!

Here is one end and a side street:


Here is the other end:


Just as the cops approached, these two red jokers were burning rubber.


With no way out, this brave man, with his family inside, decided to knock down a fence with his radical van conversion. Unfortunately, the van did not have enough ground clearance and got caught on the railroad track.


And while that was happening, a man in a stolen Honda Accord with a lot of ammo of unknown provenance inside crashed and caught fire.


Elsewhere, the fast and the furious drove between walls of containers, trying to find an escape route. They were weaving in and out like they were a combination of the train track chase in The French Connection and the concrete river race in Grease. Oakland, by the way, is the fifth busiest port in the United States.


And see that family with the stroller? They’re from the red van!


Big city cops in California often joke that CHP stands for Can’t Handle Policework. But the Highway Patrol did an admirable job here. When it was all over, they had impounded 12 cars and issued 23 citations. As Ponch and John let the cars out one-by-one, they were able to get everyone and every vehicle’s identities. More charges will be brought after the videos are thoroughly reviewed.

Check out all the action and wackiness here:

Images source: All photos via ABC7News

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22 Comments on “Anatomy of Largest Sideshow Cop Chase Caught On Tape...”

  • avatar

    A car is a weapon and can cause death or serious injury to completely innocent bystanders. I personally enjoy seeing wild car chases that end with the police executing the perps.

    If more people see that “you can’t run”, perhaps they’ll give up and just accept the jail time – instead of leading cops on long dangerous chases.

    I know someone who died because they were hit during a police chase. I’ve got no sympathy at all for shooting victims who try to flee – or use their cars as weapons.

    • 0 avatar

      You’d get the same result of no reason to flee, if noone was chasing….. Which would reduce the amount I have to pay to fund professional chasers as well..

    • 0 avatar

      Another thing that needs to stop is the televising of chases. If that happens, perhaps people would stop thinking that running is the thing to do.

      I do admire police forces’ effort to use parallel chases & helicopter observation so that the ‘perp’ does not feel particularly threatened. I also find it humorous that cops often just go to the perp’s home and just wait for him.

  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    There are two keywords here: “Fast and Furious” Well, three words.

    Dumb people see those type of movies and cannot understand the difference between a Hollywood fantasy and reality.

  • avatar

    Screw it, i know I’ll catch heat for this opinion but I like it that this is part of our car culture. It shouldn’t be popular or common, but I appreciate it as a bit of extra spice. I feel the exact same way about the odd biker group pulling highway wheelies.

    Provided, of course, that they block traffic first and it doesn’t happen all the time.

    • 0 avatar
      Land Ark

      When it was happening in the 1950s it was all a sort of innocent fun. Kids were breaking out of their straight-and-narrow upbringing and rebelling against the old culture. Those kids are now looked at as heroic and lovable. The police were stuffy old-thinkers.
      Now though, this is serious stuff that should be dealt with severely. Someone could have been hurt! (unlike in the 50s)

      • 0 avatar

        I used to be with it, then they changed what it was. Now what was it isn’t it, and what is it is weird and scary to me. It’ll happen to you too.
        Grandpa Simpson

  • avatar

    Yeah they look like a dangerous and unruly bunch. I wonder what real crimes were being done while this senseless display of state might was going on. Oh well its all OT for those who serve and protect themselves.

    • 0 avatar

      These s*deshows are not harmless car enthusiasts doing donuts. Google “Oakland s*deshow” and you’ll see plenty of stories of shootings. Shots were fired and weapons confiscated at the event discussed in this article. Some of those vehicles were stolen. If true that the fire pictured was caused by ammo, that should clue you in.

      • 0 avatar

        Still though, the activity of burnouts has nothing to do with other crimes. I wouldn’t root for felony charges at dog shows if attendees started bringing guns and drugs to them. Totally separate issue.

        I didn’t know it was illegal to be near one of these either, as someone pointed out below. That bothers me to say the least. If I’m walking down the street I would stop eveytime to watch something like this. Doesn’t make me a participant.

      • 0 avatar

        I doubt that the fire was caused by ammo. Probably caused by wrecking into a wall. Or maybe the perp tried to burn the car and destroy the ammo to avoid weapons charges.

  • avatar

    Street’s closed, pizza boy. Find another way home.

  • avatar

    That’s a lot of cops for a slide show. I wonder, as the OPD and CHP were busy corralling a bunch of guys/gals imitating Ken Block, how many other areas could’ve used some of that police presence.

    You mentioned cars were impounded. Does that mean those cars will ultimately become the property of the OPD? You also mentioned the police have everyone and every cars identity. Is just being there a crime or must you actively participate?

    I’m not condoning the slide but it’s something gear heads have been doing for a long time. Seems like the police response was a bit heavy especially for this type of event.

    Let me add, the people forming that ring as the cars do donuts might want to think twice. I wouldn’t stand that close to a professional doing the same. For a bunch of amateurs I’d be well clear.

    • 0 avatar

      These idiots have absolutely nothing in common with Ken Block.

      And a slide show is done with a Carousel projector.
      A “Side Show” is where miscreants illegally do donuts and ghost ride, often with fatal results. The stolen Honda and ammunition are indications of the quality of individuals participating.

    • 0 avatar

      While I can’t speak specifically to the laws there, most likely the OPD will eventually be the owners of a number of those impounded vehicles and the proceeds from the sale will likely go into the OPD budget. Again I can’t say specifically what the laws are there but around year yes you can get a fine and potentially jail time for simply being in attendance at a “street race”. Around here you’ll find a number of industrial areas where there are signs that say how much you can be fined for being present at a “street race”. Yes these guys weren’t actually racing but the definition of a street race in the laws is usually broad enough that they shouldn’t have a problem making a charge like that stick.

    • 0 avatar

      These idiots have absolutely NOTHING in common with Ken Block.

      These are just miscreants who illegally do donuts and ghost ride (and worse), often with fatal results. The stolen Honda and ammunition are indications of the quality of individuals participating.

  • avatar

    That first pic made me think, “We’re on a mission from God.”

  • avatar

    All that and only 23 citations??

  • avatar

    I live less than a mile from where this all happened. The Port is absolutely deserted in the evening. Let the kids have their fun.

    While sideshows usually concentrate those of ill refute, I’d rather have the CHP use my tax dollars on something that benefits the safety of my neighborhood, where there is a shooting almost weekly.

    OPD usually has their hands tied with bigger issues, and is constantly underfunded/staffed, yet we have this outside police force(CHP) whom I’ve seen do nothing for Oakland or surrounding communities, aside from nick them for roadside taxes. Ticketed me for a stutter stop on a residential street, nearly two miles from a freeway; yet when I hear shots fired in my neighborhood, OPD takes 30 minutes to respond, and CHP laughs at you.

    While I sympathize with OPD and all of their inherent problems, CHP is really just a giant waste of taxpayer dollars, at least in the East Bay.

  • avatar

    Looks like a lot of LEO’s until you start counting the number of cars blocked in, what’s the ratio ten to one? And it appears some of John Q public were armed. On a night when there were threats of rioting and actual rioting going on, no one should be surprised or angry that CHP came down hard. Riots usually bring out a group of people who just want to do something because it’s wrong, they don’t give a rats ass about justice, or racism, they want to steal a car and get away with it, break and enter without consequences, etc. People don’t realize that when a metro area has major demonstrations of a lawless nature, they spread to other cities. So if it seems okay for the people of Oakland to tolerate hundreds of people playing ‘while the cats are away the mice will play,’ in the middle of a street, then you won’t mind it happening in your neck of the woods.

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