CONS OF HIGH SPEED POLICE PURSUITS 1
Cons of High-SpeedPolice Pursuits
Introduction: One in every hundred high-speed police pursuitsresults in a person losing his/her life. In 2013, high-speed policechases resulted in the death of 322 people in the United States ofAmerica.
Thesis statement: This paper argues that police departmentsshould adopt a no pursuit policy since these chases respond tonon-violent crimes, result in huge causalities, and have a lowlikelihood of ending in an arrest.
A large percentage of high-speed police pursuits respond to non-violent crimes.
91% of all them are as a result of non-violent crimes.
In 2013, in California, only 5% aimed at arresting an individual suspected of having committed a violent crime
Examples of the non-violent crimes the police respond to using high-speed chases include expired driving license, missing number plates and driving without helmets for riders.
A majority of high-speed police pursuits do not result in an arrest.
17.6% involve the suspect outrunning the police.
17.6 involve the police calling off the chase.
35.7 % result in the suspect stopping on his or own will.
The number of casualties caused by the high-speed police chases is too high.
40% of these pursuits end in a crash.
20% of them result in traumatic injuries.
1% ends in death.
The high-speed police pursuits result in injuries and deaths of innocent road users.
One-third of all casualties of high-speed police pursuits are innocent bystanders.
Examples of these innocent road users include pedestrians, riders, and law abiding drivers.
Conclusion: Police departments should adopt a no pursuitpolicy.
On average, high-speed police pursuit lasts between one and fiveminutes. There exists no mandatory reporting policy that requirespolice agencies to submit their reports on the number of chasesconducted as well as the level of casualties involved in thesepursuits. However, from the available data, most which come from theNational Highway Traffic Safety Administration as well as otherinterested stakeholders, one in every a hundred high-speed policepursuits result in deaths(Frank, 2015). This paper argues that policeagencies should adopt a no pursuit policy because these chasesrespond to non-violent crimes, result in huge causalities, and have alow likelihood of ending in an arrest.
First, a large percentage of high-speed police pursuits respond tonon-violent crimes. According to a report by the InternationalAssociation of Chiefs of Police, 91% of all police chases react tonon-violent crimes(Crockett, 2015). Examples of these non-violentcrimes include simple traffic violations such as missing numberplates, riding without a helmet, and expired driver`s licenses. InCalifornia, out of 63,500 police chases, only 5% aimed at arrestingan individual suspected of having committed a violent crime(Frank,2015). Taking into consideration the number of deaths and the dangerthe high-speed police chases pose to the publicyet they are mostlyused to pursue petty crimes, these pursuits should be outlawed.
Apart from responding to non-violent crimes, a large proportion ofhigh-speed police pursuits do not result in an arrest. A researchconducted by the International Association of Chiefs of Policerevealed that approximately 35% of all police chases do not lead toan arrest. Out of these futile pursuits, 17.4% are as a result of thesuspect outrunning the police, while the remaining 17.6% involves thechasing officer calling off the chase. Also, 35.7% of police chasesresult in the suspect stopping on his/her own will (Fatchner &Lum, 2011). It is evident that a large proportion of outcomes of thehigh-speed police pursuits are independent of the efforts of the lawenforcement officers.
The number of casualties caused by the high-speed police chases istoo high. According toCrockett (2015), 40% of the police car pursuitsculminate in a crash, and 20% of these accidents result in traumaticinjury while 1% ends in death. There are various factors that come toplay when police decide to chase after a driver. First, researchshows that some police are usually high on some drugs and alcoholhence they end up causing accidents due to their reckless driving.Besides, most people panic when they see a police car chasing afterthem. Such individuals, particularly the inexperienced drivers end upmaking wrong road decisions such as over speeding in risky areas,endangering their lives as well as that of other road users. Also,police use rogue tactics to stop an escaping driver such as shootingthe tires of his/her car. All these issues increase the magnitude ofcasualties resulting from police chases.
The high-speed police pursuits result in injuries and deaths toinnocent road users According to Crockett (2015), one-third of alldeaths resulting from police chases are innocent bystanders such aspedestrians, cyclist, and uninvolved drivers. Police chases areinitiated with a goal of ensuring the safety of people such as byarresting over speeding drivers as well as the escaping criminals.However, ironically, these chases result in the death of the samepeople they are supposed to save.
In conclusion, research shows that one in every a hundred high-speedpolice chases result in death. Besides, the outcomes of a largeproportion of these pursuits have nothing to do with the policeefforts as either the suspect escape or stop on his or her own will.In addition, a huge number of deaths, crashes, and injuries resultfrom these chases. Even worse, nearly one-third of all causalities ofhigh-speed police chases are innocent bystanders, cyclists, andpedestrians. Besides, the majority of these chases respond tonon-violent offenses such as drunk driving, missing number plates,over speeding and even expired drivers license. For these reasons,police departments should adopt a no pursuit policy.
Crockett, Z. (2015). “The case for banning High-Speed PoliceChases.” Accessed on October 5, 2016.https://priceonomics.com/the-case-for-banning-high-speed-police-chases/
Frank, T. (2015). “High-speed police chases have killed thousandsof innocent bystanders.” Accessed on October 5, 2016.http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2015/07/30/police-pursuits-fatal-injuries/30187827/
Lum, C., & Fatchner, G. (2011). “Police pursuits in an age ofinnovation and reform.” Accessed on October 5, 2016.http://www.theiacp.org/Portals/0/pdfs/Publications/Police%20Pursuit.pdf