UCLA campus police removed Bird scooters this week after a local elderly woman was injured by a scooter, leading to the arrest of 16 fraternity members who had been running an underground Bird racing ring because “we couldn’t rage, we couldn’t haze—all we had left were these Birds,” the leader of the ring said.
Westwood Police Department Officer Dick Teighter received the dispatch late last Thursday night when a woman had been hit in the ankle with a Bird scooter, a pain equivalent, in medical eyes, to having one’s arm torn off by a runaway woodchipper. Teighter, as the designated UCLA Fraternity Police Responder, was put on the case.
Upon arriving at the De Neve parking lot, he saw a bizarre scene, feeling the same confusion as a student who thought studying for a midterm meant ripping four Adderalls. The unnamed elderly woman was sitting on the ground cradling her ankle, roughly ten feet from the 16 fraternity brothers doing wheelies on their Birds.
According to a police report, the fraternity brothers had been keeping an Excel of scheduled races on one of the participant’s phones, as well as tallying a running total they had gambled from their fathers’ savings account.
Teighter then went to collect the scooters and get the drivers’ licenses of the frat boys, and, as he did so, he was threatened with a lawsuit; the ringleader, Chad Meyer, reportedly said, “If this gets out, my dad’s going to sue you guys for sure. I already have a DUI and this isn’t going to be good publicity for his hedge fund.”
Teighter, relieved and pleased with himself that he had rid the campus of the danger of the Bird ring, inquired for a motive from Meyer.
“When the frats got banned, we had nothing else to do,” Meyer said. “There was all this testosterone that couldn’t be let out by our mandatory lifting sessions. We couldn’t rage, we couldn’t haze—all we had left were these Birds. Personally, years and years of disappointing my father would just vanish as soon as I stepped on that Bird. Then I wanted more people to feel the rush, so I told my brothers about it.”
After spending the night in jail, Meyer’s father posted bail for Chad and his 15 brothers. As he was leaving the station, Meyer was surrounded by some members of the press and gave an informal press conference.
“We never thought we’d take [Bird racing] this far,” Meyer told reporters. “But, like most things me and my brothers do, we took it further than people wanted us to.”
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