Ray Strack, Leader of Fort Lauderdale Critical Mass, Arrested on Friday's Ride VIDEO

Categories: Broward News

raystrackmug.jpg
Officers from the Fort Lauderdale Police Department started following alongside the city's Critical Mass in May. To say the event didn't go well would be an understatement. Dan Littell, a 30-year-old accountant, was tackled by an officer in an altercation that was caught on video. Rahim "Ra" Benjamin, a 23-year-old who lives in Sunrise, said he was knocked off his bike by a motorcycle cop.

June was much calmer. Although there were tons of cops herding the riders, there was no violence. Officers and cyclists actually seemed to -- gasp! -- get along.

Unfortunately, the peace didn't last.

On Friday, Critical Mass leader Ray Strack was arrested for resisting an officer and failure to obey. (Yes, technically the ride is leaderless, but the 55-year-old former U.S. Customs agent directs the route and serves as a spokesperson.)

Strack does not want to comment until his attorney gives the OK, but the cops say problems arose when the native New Yorker made last-minute changes to the route.

"The night was going extremely smoothly until towards the end, when some of the individuals who were riding didn't know where to go because [Strack] decided to change the route of the ride without telling anyone," says Fort Lauderdale Police Detective DeAnna Greenlaw. "That's when he got into an altercation with an officer."

According to a probable-cause form, the motorcycle cop leading the escort became confused when Strack and two other cyclists rode far ahead of the group.

"I rode forward to contact them, but I was immediately met with resistance when I told them to stop," the report by Hector Martinez says. "Seeing [Strack's] reaction, I turned around and notified lead motor sergeant to resume the ride over the bridge and head west to the preplanned route."

The form says the three riders, including Strack, then chased after the sergeant and corralled her motorcycle. Martinez then grabbed the back of Strack's T-shirt. As riders began to congregate around the scene, Martinez announced that Strack was under arrest. The report called the defendant "very defiant and non-compliant."

See also:
Fort Lauderdale Police Officer Knocks Down Critical Mass Rider With Motorcycle

See also: Fort Lauderdale Cops Tackle Critical Mass Cyclist on Video

Cyclists Defend the Fort Lauderdale Critical Mass from Voice Media Group on Vimeo.

This mass should have been a celebration for Strack. In January, he fractured his T9 vertebrae while riding. This group ride marked only his second back on a bike since getting hit. In a video capturing his arrest, onlookers can be heard pleading for the officers to go easy on him. "He has a broken back!" screams one.

Although it's shaky, the video makes one thing clear: Cops and cyclists need to get together and come up with a solution immediately. Too many people are getting hurt.

UPDATE: Here's another account of Friday night's events, from Stuart Nelson, who was there during the arrest.

I was the ride leader until Ray arrived and was with Ray when the arrest occurred. Police version is a fabrication. There were no route changes at that time. The alleged route changes before then were the result of the police not understanding the route they were given (they confused 6th Ave with 6th street). The police weren't accompanying us, they were leading us, badly, against our wishes. Ray rode up to the officer to complain that she was going 3mph up a bridge, wouldn't let anyone pass her, and the riders were having difficulty staying upright at that speed. The officer responded by using her motorcycle to squeeze Ray against the curb. He slowed and went behind her and up on her left. He was then tackled from behind without warning.

Send your story tips to the author, Allie Conti.

Follow Allie Conti on Twitter: @allie_conti



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21 comments
Bicycleclub
Bicycleclub

As Founder of BicyCleclub.Org this story will be and has been posted, back in March 2014 my self and two friends from Pompano Beach went and joined up on Critical Mass ride it was amazing and meet lots of variety of folks, back then there was no cops leading nor guiding the group. Nevertheless to say when the ride ended in Downtown Fort Lauderdale we where on our way back and when crossing US1 and Las Olas a Broward Sherrif was merging to make a right turn off US1 onto Las Olas and he had a Red Light with the sign No Turns on Red! What has happened is that when i was crossing with my bicycle he was coming with speed of at least 40mph the officer had to slam his brakes and i had to jump off the bike in order not to get hit by him, he pulled down his window and screamed at me that iam out of my mind crossing, i told him he turned on a red light with the sign no turn on RED!!!! He looked at the sign and he speed away like he had a emergency call with lights on!!! As for me besides some road rash and almost killed by a BSO that pretty much fled the Scene, i so wish i would not have jumped off the bike and would have hit me, and no i would not file a lawsuit against him or her nooo i would make public news about it with witnesses.

Rosita Vee
Rosita Vee

It's such an incredible waste of resources! How much money are tax payers spending on so many officers to harass people on bikes?

Lenny Lebowitz
Lenny Lebowitz

Well thats critical mass' s fault for lack of imagination and planning

frankd4
frankd4 topcommenter

.....just like the "staged" RIOT on memorial day both FLPD and BSO must create problems to DIVERT ATTENTION away from the indictments and convictions of LEOs various top brass


these shows will soon end with many LEOs going down and until then the BAD COPs will create these scenes

frankd4
frankd4 topcommenter

Fort Lauderdale Police Detective DeAnna Greenlaw should be forced to file under penalty of perjury a sworn affidavit that her engagement ring was not financed by scott rothstein money


how can the citizenry have full faith in a spokesperson who herself may be LYING about her personal relationships ?

frankd4
frankd4 topcommenter

...............IT IS THIS SIMPLE here in ft liquordale


IF you want the 'co-operation' of law enforcement, either FLPD or BSO, you simply have to PAY THEM under-the-table = period


then you can get away with any ACTIVITY, legal or illegal, you want, from PONZI schemes to parking 


have a problem with you ex or a hooker ? - just BUY A COP - problem solved


it really IS that simple !

frankd4
frankd4 topcommenter

..................... the result of the police not understanding the route they were given (they confused 6th Ave with 6th street). ......................


HOW DOES THIS HAPPEN ?

acockup
acockup

Mayor Jack Seiler asked the FLPD to do these horrible things. Why don't you ask him why? 


icculus17
icculus17 topcommenter

it's true, the cops were going so slow it was hard to keep a bicycle moving. It was a ridiculous scene.  The cops could have handled things much better, not everyone is a violent criminal.


The cops kept saying "keep it moving" while arresting him and blocking the entire lane of the road.  There were at least 5 cops needed for this circus.  


The PD is a joke, which they prove over and over again.

Jferever Dilligaf Gonz
Jferever Dilligaf Gonz

#ftp fucking cunt pig on a moto decides to tackle a 60something year old....very classy

Chris Schaaff
Chris Schaaff

I have a critical mass that I need to release ASAP

James Kendall
James Kendall

Good, I'm sick of these idiots blocking the streets on weekends.

sbogdan
sbogdan

Complete Bullshit.  F the FTL Police Dept!

Bicycleclub
Bicycleclub

@Lenny Lebowitz perhaps you should join the ride Lenny and see what it is about :)

frankd4
frankd4 topcommenter

@acockup


actually I DO E-MAIL THE MAYOR most all the time BUT realize he is only electable by towing the good-olde-boyz network line 


he is an attorney who i am certain hopes to succeed personally with future business in the real estate and divorce sectors as an insider to FLPD and BSO, as well as the COUNTY commisioners and judges - so MR MAYOR has to "go along to get along" and cheerlead for his mentors NO MATTER how dirty and fraudulent these constituent scamsters are


only LOSERs and CRUISERs are time-proven lucrative pursuits here in ft liqourdale

frankd4
frankd4 topcommenter

@icculus17


some may have nothing to lose IF they know they are about to be indicted regarding their personal dealings with scott rothstein


the recent convictions and resignations of top brass at both FLPD and BSO means many more are involved although not yet hooked and those yet to be named are BAD COPs causing problems 

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