What do you get when you have a rogue biker group, a sheriff's deputy who is allegedly a leading member, and an inquisitive TV news reporting team? A seemingly nervous deputy and a pretty interesting story.
The streets of San Francisco and surrounding Bay Area have reportedly been haunted recently by gangs of dirt-bike riding hooligans that, along with highways, use sidewalks, stairways, off-road paths, parking structures, and most any other accessible areas as their own personal stunt playgrounds.
The name of the rambunctious biker gang has recently been revealed, thanks to KPIX 5 TV news reporter, Betty Yu, and is called Bay Area Supermoto, or BASM.
Bay Area Supermoto has become a concern for San Francisco law enforcement and Bay area residents because their Bay Area Supermoto riding styles are not just threatening to their own lives and limbs, but also fellow motorists and pedestrians.
CBS SF Bay Area reports that the Bay Area Supermoto folks have been ripping and roaring around the streets of San Francisco for months, putting others on the roads and byways in grave danger. But due to the speed and maneuverability of the Bay Area Supermoto bikes, police have a tough time catching the purportedly menacing riders, not to mention the inherent dangers involved in high speed chases.
Videos, claiming to be posted online by Bay Area Supermoto, feature riders doing wheelies down San Francisco area streets and highways, catching air, blowing down sidewalks, up and down stairs, and weaving in and out of traffic in large Bay Area Supermoto packs.
Despite their often large and visible San Francisco presence, however, Bay Area Supermoto has remained somewhat of a mysterious enigma, members seemingly not too concerned about law enforcement.
But having peaked the interest of the Bay Area news, more is being learned about Bay Area Supermoto.
"They meet at the marina, at the yacht club, usually Friday night," said a former Bay Area Supermoto rider that wished to remain anonymous to avoid any possible retribution. "It's almost a sport. It is a sport. It's how many dangerous maneuvers can you pull, how good are you at riding and not wrecking your bike into these cars and things that are around you."
The conversation with the former Bay area Supermoto rider also revealed a disturbing tidbit, raising not just the eye brows of the T.V. reporter but also the Bay Area Supermoto story to another level. That tidbit being that the leader of the Bay Area Supermoto biker group is a member of law enforcement.
"He would make comments like he is not too worried about the police because he is one," said the Bay Area Supermoto insider.
He also named this alleged leader, Zack Schlief, a man that also goes by Zack Douglas, according to the report. A follow up visit to Zack's Facebook page showcased him both standing by a Marin County sheriff's patrol car and on a recognizable motorcycle.
Further follow up with the Marin County Sheriff's Department confirmed that there is a deputy named Zack Schlief on their force. But while the department did say they would be conducting an internal investigation on Zack being involved with Bay Area Supermoto, they also said it would be a private investigation.
When told of deputy Schlief's alleged involvement in the Bay Area Supermoto shenanigans, SanFrancisco police officer, Carlos Manfredi, was none too pleased, saying the hooligans on dirt-bikes have been a public safety nuisance for months, and an officer being among their ranks violates an officer's oath "to serve and protect."
"It puts everyone in danger. They are riding without any regard for public safety. They're doing wheelies, performing stunts throughout the city. It's all fun and games until someone gets hurt... We took an oath, to serve and protect, and that oath doesn't stop when our shift ends."When reporter Betty Yu caught up with Zack, the Marin County Sheriff's Deputy and purported Bay Area Supermoto leader was reportedly just finishing a long day of BASM riding, the reporter asking Zack, "We have seen you guys riding around San Francisco doing some crazy stunts, is there any truth to that?"
"No, that's not what I do," said the deputy. "I mean I ride with the group, but I am not doing anything like that."
When Ms. Yu questioned Zack on his alleged leadership role with Bay Area Supermoto, the deputy again denied, denied, denied, saying, "I am not the leader. I am definitely not the leader of it."
But Yu and her team had seen Zack earlier, apparently giving clear instructions to some Bay Area Supermoto neophytes, reportedly saying, "Everyone new welcome, if you have never been on big ride before, it's a lot of fun. When you are the one that is leading the ride, like me and him, it's like f*****g herding cats."
When pressed on his law enforcement status and his involvement with Bay Area Supermoto seeming to be a conflict of interest, an exasperated Zack claimed, "I am not doing any stunts," followed by an attempt to flee the interview, saying, "I am sorry I am not talking to you."
In the end, Yu noting that there was video evidence of Zack participating in the questionable antics and types of stunts Bay Area Supermoto riders are known for, the deputy said, "Please do not talk to me please!"
Then he hopped back on his motorcycle and split.
In the wake of the exchange between reporters and the sometimes-deputy, sometimes alleged Bay Area Supermoto leader, the Bay Area Supermoto Facebook and Instagram accounts were switched to private, while Zack Schlieff's Facebook page disappeared.
[Images via YouTube]