The Prince George’s County Council intends to strictly enforce laws on the use of off-road vehicles.

Tuesday’s committee of the whole meeting was attended by council members who wanted to know if they had the authority to impose the worst punishment possible and whether it would be effective. Both questions appeared to have a yes response.

The bill, which was initially proposed in the early spring and put on hold while the issue was researched, would increase the initial fines for unauthorized off-road and all-terrain vehicle use from $250 to $500 for the first infraction, with subsequent penalties rising to $1,000, the maximum allowed by state law.

They also advocated for the seizure of unregistered or abandoned automobiles when they are utilized in criminal activity or when a judge orders them after a conviction.

One query came from Councilwoman Jolene Ivey, who questioned how many penalties police were now issuing and how many would eventually be impounded if they were forbidden from pursuing those vehicles.

The aircraft unit of the Prince George’s County Police Department was the solution offered by council member Sydney Harrison.

Harrison responded when he questioned how frequently police go up to chase them by air, “Because they can’t chase them by a police car.”

Harrison reported that more than 300 ATV users had been apprehended by aircraft. That is one of the instruments they employ to aid in the capture of these criminals.

The council voted 10-0 to initially approve the proposal after learning that. Prior to being signed into law by the county executive, it must still be put to a second vote.

About Ashton Horne

Ashton Horne is an upcoming writer who currently resides in Harford County. He currently interns for TheDMVDaily as a journalist.

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