STURGIS, S.D. – As the roar of engines fills the air and the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally welcomes more than half a million thrill-seekers, a concerning trend is emerging – an increase in drug-related incidents.
On Facebook, the Sturgis Police Department shared an image of a car brimming with illicit drugs, accompanied by a stern message: “Drugs are bad. Bringing drugs into our town is even worse. If you don’t want to spend a night in the Meade County Sheriff’s Office Jail, leave your stash at home.”
With the rally’s kick-off, the numbers are painting a stark picture. The Sturgis Police Department has reported a 1.5-fold increase in drug arrests during the first five days compared to the previous year. A total of 61 arrests have been made for misdemeanor drug/paraphernalia possession, with an additional 25 arrests for felony drug possession. Beyond drugs, officers have taken 43 individuals into custody for driving under the influence and arrested 10 others for having an open container in their vehicles.
Even the Meade County Sheriff’s Office chimed in on Facebook, cautioning those with an unsteady grip: “If you are so drunk that you can’t keep your bike from tipping over at Sherman and Junction (at a 4-way stop), just do us a favor and put the handcuffs on yourself.”