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Here’s how AB-410 A.K.A. that sideshow bill, can land you a year in jail and hit you with a $25,000 fine if you bring your Mustang out and they catch you swangin’ it.

Recent mayhem brought on by last Sunday’s sideshow might be just the event that supporters of AB-410 will use to speed a bill through the California Assembly and Senate, making it law. According to the SF Chronicle and in posts that blanked social media earlier this weekend (Apr. 14,2019) an East Oakland sideshow got way out of hand with at least one delivery truck looted, a bus burned, and rocks thrown, injuring one police officer. AB-410 has been quietly making its way through California’s Transportation and Public Safety committees respectively with little opposition and when this bill inevitably gets voted on in the House and Senate, fines and possible jail time for participating in a sideshow will be here as early as Summer 2019.

An excellent bill analysis and description of what AB-410 aims to do is linked here. 

As existing law stands, there are no specific laws targeting sideshow activity. At best, all police can do is cite you for reckless driving with the largest penalty anyone can receive being a misdemeanor charge and vehicle impoundment for a month, a slap on the wrist for serious sideshow participants with multiple cars or access to someone else’s ride. Existing law has no teeth.

AB-410 means first-time sideshow participants either get one year in jail, up to a $10,000 fine or both. 

Second-time offenders ratchets that misdemeanor charge up to a felony, which you’ll have to disclose that charge to possible employers, and you get another fine up to $25,000.

AB-410 goes into the definition of what a sideshow is. Technically, a sideshow can involve as few as two people, one person doing a car stunt and another person blocking access for other cars to not get in the way. There doesn’t even have to be spectators but if police see you doing a donut in the middle of an intersection and someone’s blocking at least one lane of traffic with their own body or car, that’s a sideshow.

Spectators are not subject to this sideshow law and, if you’re only watching and not blocking any access to a property, road, or direction of travel, you’re OK. AB-410 is specifically aimed at people driving and blocking.

I’m all for AB-410, it gives the police some real teeth against sideshow activity. Rest assured Oakland PD will go for maximum jail time and fines for anyone they catch right after this bill passes as a scapegoat.

Doing a burnout on an empty two-lane country road in the middle of Modesto is one thing but we can all agree sideshows are stupid, must be stopped, and punishments doled out.

AB-410, let’s get this passed! Yes on AB-410.

Source: SF Chronicle

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