'Critical Mass is a Critical Mess': Miami Police Chief

The Critical Mass bicycle rides that are designed to share the roads are instead taking them over, Miami Police Chief Manuel Orosa told reporters Wednesday

By Julia Bagg and Brian Hamacher
|  Thursday, Jun 26, 2014  |  Updated 6:55 AM EDT
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The Critical Mass bicycle rides that are designed to share the roads are instead taking them over, Miami's Police chief told reporters Wednesday. NBC 6's Julia Bagg reports.

The Critical Mass bicycle rides that are designed to share the roads are instead taking them over, Miami's Police chief told reporters Wednesday. NBC 6's Julia Bagg reports.

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The Critical Mass bicycle rides that are designed to share the roads are instead taking them over, Miami's Police chief told reporters Wednesday.

"Critical Mass is a critical mess," Chief Manuel Orosa said at a morning news conference, where he expressed his concerns over the monthly bike rides.

Orosa called the rides good for the community but said they need to be safer, and said riders could be cited.

Rider Chaunce O'Connor defended the cyclists' practice of riding in the street.

"Civil disobedience is the only thing in America and around the world that's been proven to bring entire regimes even down," O'Connor said.

A Miami Critical Mass ride in April led to some collisions between cars and cyclists after police decided to let them watch out for each other. In past rides, Miami Police had posted officers to help stem the flow of traffic.

Miami Police said between 3,000 and 5,000 cyclists participated in the event.

In February, Miami Heat stars LeBron James and Dwyane Wade rode with the Critical Mass cyclists.

Last month, a cyclist in Fort Lauderdale's Critical Mass ride claimed police used excessive force when they arrested him for intentionally blocking police cruisers on the road. Police said the man, Dan Littell, was confrontational and cut them off while they were operating in an emergency capacity.

The Critical Mass rides are organized to raise awareness about bike safety. The next Miami ride is scheduled for Friday night.

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