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New Haven files lawsuit against entertainment company for holding illegal motorcycle rally

Elicker - Motorcycle rally.jpg
Michael Lyle, Jr.
New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker addresses the city's lawsuit against an entertainment company that held an illegal motorcycle rally in the downtown area last September.

The city of New Haven has filed a lawsuit against an entertainment company for holding an illegal motorcycle rally last September. 

It alleges that Eastcoastin Companies held the rally without the proper city permits.

It cost law enforcement $80,000 to maintain public safety during the event, which the city intends to recover.

Mayor Justin Elicker said the group ignored several requests to not hold the rally.  

“We worked very hard with the organizers to make them stop doing this event last year," Elicker said "Even so, when they announced that they're going to have this event, have thousands of people come to New Haven and it puts an incredible amount of stress on the police department. So what we did is use a lot of different tools available to us to make sure that in the future people abide by the law.”

Police Chief Karl Jacobson said his team is better prepared to crack down on illegal practices.

“I just think we need to get better with big events like this to learn how to do it, but our number one thing is to prevent it from happening at all," said Jacobson.

Event organizer Gabriel Canestri, Jr., is among five defendants named in the city’s lawsuit. He was arrested and later found guilty of reckless endangerment. 

Mike Lyle is a former reporter and host at WSHU.