MIAMI (CBS4) – The Miami-Dade Police Department admitted Monday that it was their officers who led Miami Heat star LeBron James the wrong way down a Miami Gardens street to Sun Life Stadium so he could get to the Jay-Z/Justin Timberlake concert in time.
“Upon further investigation, it has been confirmed that the Miami-Dade Police Department did facilitate Mr. James from one intersection to another in the adjacent area of the stadium,” a statement from MDPD read. “This was not a scheduled escort and although all safety precautions were taken, the department has identified these actions as a violation of departmental policies.”
The fuss began Friday night when James posted a video to his Instagram account showing his vehicle behind others with police lights flashing, as oncoming traffic on the three-lane side of the road allowed them to pass. The caption read “They treat us so well! Needed it cause traffic was nuts!!”
The video received more than 85, 000 likes but plenty of negative comments too directed at both LeBron James and the police.
Miami-Dade Police say it was one of their motorcycle officers working off duty who led LeBron James about eight blocks to the stadium..
Police say the officer got a call on his radio to help the Heat superstar who was stuck in traffic. Police still don’t know who made that request, but they’re looking into it.
Major Nancy Perez of the Miami-Dade Police Department told CBS4’s Maggie Newland, “It was just one officer who was doing his job. He was radioed. He was asked to do something and that’s what he did, but unfortunately our department does not authorize us, in any way shape or form, to go in the opposite road against traffic.”
Perez added that the officer was working off duty and being paid by Sun Life Stadium, not Miami-Dade taxpayers. The investigation is ongoing and disciplinary action is possible.
Katie Przepyszny said she doesn’t think it was right for LeBron James to get this kind of special treatment “for a non-emergency situation.”
Not everyone objected to the star treatment. “I don’t think he’s above the law but it doesn’t really hurt,” said Diego Fernandez-Soto who was also stuck in traffic on the way to the concert. “If I dunked the way LeBron James dunks I’d probably get the same treatment
LeBron James could not be reached for comment Monday afternoon.