Orange County cracks down on ATV riders

Investigators in Orange County say a pregnant driver making a left turn from Orange Avenue to Holden was hit by dirt bike Sunday.  Sheriff's deputies say that woman was then hit with a helmet, punched and kicked by a swarm of ATV riders and dirt bikers as she got out to check on the rider that hit her.

"To see that many people engaged in that reckless and dangerous behavior on their off road vehicles with no tags it was concerning to us," said Sheriff John Mina.  

Mina addressed reporters on Thursday afternoon talking about the challenge they are having with these rogue riders.  OCSO investigators believe the same swarm of riders who attacked the pregnant woman hours later crashed into another driver.  That driver was traveling south on the turnpike when her car was hit, causing her to lose control and slam into an electronic road sign.  

"We arrested 12 people on Sunday and a lot of those people weren’t even from Orlando. They were from Tampa and Miami," Mina said.  

In another instance, investigators say a group of rogue riders surrounded a marked patrol car.  One of the bikers intentionally breaking the side view mirror off the cruiser before slamming his fist onto the hoods several times, forcing the deputy out off the road.  

"Some of that brazen behavior comes from that fact that they’re covering their faces and helmets and obviously there’s no tags on their vehicles and the fact they think they can get away from us," said Mina.

Mina said, despite the department's 'no chase' policy, they are still able to track those rogue riders down.  They do so by using their helicopter, watching from above while coordinating with units on the roads.  Investigators are also using social media to track down the culprits.  

Mina is asking the public to not give the rogue riders the notariety they want, to help law enforcement instead.  

"I’ve seen a lot of stuff on Facebook and social media, people sharing these videos and talking about it. Instead of taking a video and sharing that video, just call 911 especially when they’re acting dangerously."