March 12, 2021
A 27-year-old Philadelphia man has been charged in a road rage assault caught on video on South Broad Street, where a collision between an illegal ATV and an SUV turned violent Tuesday evening.
Gregory Stevens was charged Friday with aggravated assault, criminal mischief, simple assault, recklessly endangering another person, harassment and gun-related offenses, District Attorney Larry Krasner announced.
And in another February incident — an alleged armed robbery in Kensington — Stevens is charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault and robbery.
In Tuesday's incident, prosecutors allege that Stevens was responsible for the initial crash with an SUV on the 1100 block of South Broad Street, where Stevens was among a group of people riding illegal ATVs and dirt bikes.
The driver of the SUV, who was riding north behind the ATV crew, struck Stevens' vehicle when he and others abruptly stopped, police said.
What ensued was a shocking attack in the middle of the road, portions of which were captured in a video recorded by a witness at the scene. The video, which began circulating online earlier this week, shows the ATV rider repeatedly punching the 25-year-old driver of the SUV before hurling heavy objects at the victim's vehicle and smashing his windows.
At one point during the encounter, the ATV rider is seen brandishing a gun that was handed to him by another person in the group of ATV riders.
Everyday I watch my friend’s stories & be so glad I don’t live in Philly no more 😂 pic.twitter.com/2Ote6M7lGv— 𝖆𝖋𝖙𝖊𝖗𝖑𝖎𝖋𝖊 (@G0ddessJay) March 10, 2021
The victim and a passenger in the SUV both suffered minor injuries in the attack, police said.
Separate from Tuesday's incident, Krasner's office had obtained a warrant for Stevens' arrest in connection with an armed robbery on Feb. 22 at a pharmacy on the 3900 block of Kensington Avenue.
Stevens allegedly wielded a firearm and demanded oxycontin pills from the pharmacy owner. During a struggle that ensued, Stevens' gun fired a single bullet that struck the pharmacy owner in the chest, according to police.
Prosecutors said Stevens pointed the gun at the pharmacy owner's head before fleeing the store and getting into the passenger side of a running sedan.
"This violence is an outrage and will be vigorously and justly prosecuted," Krasner said. "I also continue to urge leaders at the state and local level to address an historic increase in traffic crashes resulting in injuries and fatalities. Government should be much more forward-thinking about transportation and shared streets, and while the criminal legal system can offer input, we should not be leading this conversation. Fair and effective enforcement of traffic rules is possible without excessive criminalization. My office is prepared to be a partner in ensuring streets and roads are safe for drivers, cyclists, disabled people and pedestrians alike."
Stevens will face ATV violations from Tuesday's incident, which are summary offenses in Pennsylvania.
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney noted the importance of addressing the problem of illegal ATVs on Philadelphia streets. He urged city residents to provide eyes and ears to help police enforce the law and confiscate these vehicles.
"The safety of pedestrians and motorists is paramount, and our administration takes this issue very seriously," Kenney said. "Dirt bikes and ATVs are illegal to operate on Philadelphia streets. Operators can be ticketed, and vehicles confiscated. Anyone who observes this type of activity, or has information regarding planned 'ride-outs,' is encouraged to contact the Philadelphia Police Department by calling or texting (215) 686-TIPS. Police have been successful in confiscating a significant number of dirt bikes, ATV and scooters as part of their efforts to cut down on this illegal activity and will continue to do so."