Maui police seek to crack down on law-flouting dirt bikers

They're brazenly breaking traffic laws ... and creating an unsafe situation, officials said.
Published: Aug. 10, 2022 at 7:53 PM HST|Updated: Aug. 10, 2022 at 8:04 PM HST
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WAILUKU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Maui Police Department is warning the public about a growing and dangerous trend around the Valley Isle.

Officers are concerned about thrill-seeking dirt bikers who are blatantly breaking traffic laws.

“This is something that is gaining more traction because of social media,” said MPD Lahaina District School Resource Officer Marvin Tevaga.

“To get likes and posts and re-shares, they think gives you validation, but in the end run, it could end your life.”

Multiple videos show dirt bikers doing pop-a-wheelies throughout neighborhoods, along busy highways, even on school properties.

It is becoming a common sight around the island and Maui police said calls come in almost daily.

“When they’re riding on campus, they’re actually destroying our irrigation system,” said Lahaina Intermediate School Principal Stacy Bookland. “They’re ‘popping wheelies’ and they’re not wearing helmets and it’s really scary for our young adults to be out there. I mean, that’s just a huge risk.”

MPD is hoping to put a stop to this type of behavior before it is too late.

“We’re trying to avoid fatalities,” said Wailuku patrol officer Victor Marmolejos Santana. “We had an increase in fatalities this year and we’re trying to avoid the loss of life.”

Officials said riding a dirt bike is only legal on an authorized track.

Authorities said catching the culprits have been a challenge for them and they’re calling on the public to help report any dirt-bikers riding on public roads.

“The community is our eyes and ears. You guys know who these kids are, you guys know who these dirt bikers are. If you do know who they are, contact us,” Tevaga said. “I rather be on the side of caution than heartbreak.”

If you see this type of behavior, MPD asks that you call their non-emergency line at (808) 244-6400. If it is an emergency, call 911.

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