Video of Professional Biker Using Homeless as Props Causes Outrage

The man who posted the video on Facebook says he will not take the controversial video down

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A video posted on Facebook of professional bike riders using homeless people as props has caused outrage on social media. The man who posted the video said he wonÂ’t take it down. Mekahlo Medina reports from downtown Los Angeles for the NBC4 News at 11 on Tuesday, March 11, 2014. (Published Wednesday, Mar 12, 2014)

    "Disgusting" is what one LAPD officer says of the actions that took place in an online video that shows a professional bike rider using homeless people on Skid Row as props.

    "This is just a matter of not having value for another human being," LAPD Officer Deon Joseph said.

    In the video, posted to the Facebook page of OSS Bike Shop, BMX bike rider Brandon Begin and two friends are seen jumping over sleeping homeless people with their bikes.

    "Homeless people should be treated with respect and they’re not furniture," a visitor to downtown Los Angeles said.

    NBC4’s Mekahlo Medina showed the video to some of the homeless people on Skid Row.

    "That’s not right, it’s not right," one homeless man said.

    "It’s exploitation of the homeless people," another homeless man said.

    Adam Grandmaison owns OSS Bike Shop, located just a block away from Skid Row. He said he wasn’t around when the video was made, and that while he questioned whether he should post the video, he ultimately chose to because "nobody got hurt."

    "It’s like right on the line of being messed up you know and so that was kind of a concern for me," Grandmaison said. "Being that nobody got hurt or anything, I didn’t think that it was too offensive."

    Since the video has been posted, it has received many negative comments. Grandmaison, whose store has been open just three months, does not plan on taking the video down.

    "I was complicit in it by posting on the Facebook I guess, but I also felt like, all’s well that ends well I guess you know because nobody did get hurt," Grandmaison said.

    LAPD Officer Deon Joseph has been working on Skid Row for 16 years and was disappointed to hear that Grandmaison plans to keep the video posted.

    "I’d like to have him come for a Skid Row tour so I can educate him on homelessness and what these individuals go through, I mean their life is hard enough," Joseph said.

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