Police in West Yorkshire have come under fire after a viral video apparently showed officers ignoring a helmet-less hooligan taunting them with wheelies on a major A-road.
The video, shared far and wide on social media, shows the rider of a potentially stolen Honda CRF100 performing stunts and wheelies alongside a marked patrol car. This continues for around a minute and a half on the A58 before the officers exit the carriageway.
Watch the video here:
The clip has sparked outrage from viewers who are baffled by what looks like police inaction, prompting the force to release a statement on their actions.
A representative for the force didn’t deny the authenticity of the footage but explained that pursuits are only permitted by specially trained officers in suitable vehicles. They added that any pursuit has to be “appropriately assessed” and that they have to consider the safety of the public, officers involved and the suspect.
The statement continued: “We are still looking into the circumstances… but we have been able to establish that the officer had activated body-worn video to capture footage of the suspect and the manner of driving, before making a deliberate tactical decision to deviate from their route to de-escalate the risks around a situation involving a rider who was already driving dangerously [with] a high probability that he would fail to stop.”
The force insist they are aware of concern around ike crime and anti-social behaviour and are carrying out enquiries to track down the rider involved. The police added Honda CRF300s to their fleet to help fight bike crime.