- Published: Friday, May 06, 2022 04:20 PM
CHICAGO – People will be prohibited to slow or stop due to a street sideshow on any street or highway thanks to a measure sponsored by Assistant Majority Leader Tony Munoz that was signed into law Friday.
“Law enforcement officials need to be able to keep people safe,” said Munoz (D-Chicago). “Without this law, innocent people were put in dangerous situations with no one to stop them.”
According to a CBS report, Eisenhower Expressway was shut down in December 2021 with drivers blocking the on- and off-ramps and every lane while a group of people engaged in dangerous stunts, such as doing donuts with their cars and dancing on the expressway.
The new law defines a street sideshow as any event in which one or more cars block or impede traffic to perform unauthorized motor vehicle stunts, motor vehicle speed contests, or motor vehicle exhibitions of speed. Munoz’ law prohibits a street sideshow on any street or highway in Illinois and a person may not knowingly cause the movement of traffic to slow or stop for the purpose of facilitating street racing or a street sideshow. Under the previous law, people cannot be arrested for blocking a street or highway.
The law penalizes the impediment of traffic for a street sideshow or street racing in the same manner as the act of street racing. The first violation is considered a Class A misdemeanor punishable by a determinate sentence of less than one year and a minimum fine of $250. A second or subsequent violation is considered a Class 4 felony punishable by a sentence of one to three years and a minimum fine of $500.
“It’s police officers’ duty to protect our communities,” Munoz said. “Removing this barrier allows them to keep people safe.”
House Bill 5439 takes effect Jan. 1, 2023.