Police issue warning about juveniles riding recklessly in Haddonfield

HADDONFIELD, New Jersey (WPVI) -- Haddonfield police have been warning residents about juveniles riding recklessly on their bicycles.

Police posted a video to their Facebook page showing a group of juveniles biking around town through the business district on Friday around 4 p.m. Officers were dispatched to that area.

Then, later that evening, around 9 p.m., Chief Cutler saw a group of bikers, some who matched the earlier description, in front of CVS on Kings Highway, and identified some of them as the riders from the earlier incident.

The cyclists were taken to the police station, where they were processed and released to their parents, and their parents were shown the video of the kids.

But some people who saw the video believe it is a case of "kids being kids."

"We cannot disagree strongly enough with that attitude or perception. We chose the posted video because it was the best angle to illustrate the dangerous riding that is occurring," police said.

The second video posted showed cyclists passing cars and crossing over into oncoming traffic while doing a "wheelie." The bikers were not wearing helmets.

"Let them be kids, but let them be safe kids," said Pat McMahon, a parent who lives in Haddonfield.

Haddonfield police said many of these teens are riding recklessly after they get out of school.

"They're not wearing their helmets, that's a new fad I guess," said Chief Jason Cutler. "I understand, I have an 11-year-old and a 14- year-old, and I fight with them all the time to wear their helmets, it's not cool to wear your helmet, but it is safe."

Action News saw dozens of teenagers leaving Haddonfield Middle School on Monday on their bikes. Many did not have a helmet on.

"There's just not a lot of safe spaces to ride here anywhere," said McMahon. "In the area really, but especially here on Kings Highway, it gets very busy, and you get a lot of foot traffic here on the sidewalks, they're pretty crowded all around."

Others eating their dinners on the sidewalks along Kings Highway said the bike riders didn't bother them.

"I think it's quite pleasant when I see a bike rider come by, because biking is such a good source of transportation," said Maureen McGettigan.

Police said they're working with the schools in the area to talk to students about safe riding, before someone gets hurt.
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