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POLICE PURSUITS -
To pursue or not to pursue, that is the question!!

How many times have you been involved in a pursuit for only a minor
violation, like a brakelight out, or speeding? I have been in numerous chases, and in all cases concluded them without any crashes into other vehicles. I did have one that crashed into a parked car, and I had one where I collided with the suspects in a stolen vehicle. But the question here is : When should you pursue, and when not?

Every time I had a pursuit, I wondered what else would I find. Drugs. A body. Maybe a kidnapped person. Maybe loot from a bank job. Who knows? Maybe just a speeding idiot who likes to run from the police!! There are the unfortunate cases where the pursuit ends with the suspect slamming into a car that was in the wrong place at the wrong time, many times causing injury and death. Thats when the media jumps on the bandwagon and the politicians who know nothing about law enforcement begin to make a lot of noise.

For the sake of argument, lets say the mayors little 10 year old daughter is kidnapped. She was last seen in a 4 door sedan, blue in color. We then have all police officers out there looking for this blue sedan, and suppose one doesnt stop. Should we pursue them just for having a blue car? Would the mayor, who vocally slammed the police department for its chase policies now want the police officers to pursue this sedan to the ends of the earth? YOU BET YOUR SWEET ASS he would!!!! Its a little different when something like that strikes close to home, isnt it?

I realize that I gave an extreme example above, but the matter is still
there : Where do we draw the line when chasing? I certainly would feel bad if I called off a chase, only to later find that a child that was kidnapped was in that car and killed after I gave up the chase!!!

What are your opinions on this touchy issue?

Gary


The views of the contributors to this publication are not necessarily the
position of On-Duty. They send it, you read it.