CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A woman spoke to NBC Charlotte about the moment her car was surrounded by ATV and dirt bike riders last month.
Heather Perotti said she was followed by a group of riders at Tryon St. and Remount Rd. Shortly after that, her car was damaged, and she was assaulted. One of the riders later died after taking off from police.
Perotti said, at one point during the incident, she was punched in the face while sitting in her vehicle on Tryon St. That’s when she saw the riders go to Bojangles at the intersection of West Blvd. and Tryon St.
After officers arrived, the incident took a deadly turn on West Boulevard.
"It was very scary," Perotti told NBC Charlotte.
She said the tragedy didn’t have to happen.
"Whatever consequence it is, it's your choice, ultimately," she told NBC Charlotte.
Perotti said she first encountered the ATV riders and dirt bikes when she was on Remount Road.
"They (the riders) were diagonally blocking so no one could go," she said.
Perotti said she tried to get in front of the riders by turning onto Tryon St., but the situation only escalated.
"They started doing figure eights behind me," she said.
Moments later, Perotti said two of the ATVs rear-ended her. When she stopped to call the police, she was assaulted by a driver in a car, who police said was associated with the riders.
"He got out of his car and ended up punching me through my window," Perotti told NBC Charlotte. "Punched me in my ear and it rang my chimes a little bit for sure."
After being punched, Perotti said she snapped photos of the place where the group of riders went next, Bojangles at West Boulevard and Tryon Street.
When officers responded there, the riders took off. Police said one dirt bike rider, 33-year-old Michael Adams, went off the side of the road and crashed. He was taken to the hospital where he died.
"I do feel very badly for his family, but it's a choice. You have a choice to do this kind of thing," Perotti told NBC Charlotte.
It’s by no means the first time ATV riders and dirt bikers have caused problems in Charlotte.
In fact, Perotti said she decided to speak out after seeing an NBC Charlotte story on Monday night. The story showed video of at least 22 riders on Wilkinson Boulevard popping wheelies, driving up the sidewalk, and tearing up property.
"It’s not worth it, and we as a community need to stop this from happening," Perotti said.
Chavis Doby, 36, was charged with assault on a female. Jail records showed he was released from jail.
There was no word on any other charges in the case.