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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 51703 Find in a Library
Title: IF A GUY GOES FLYING BY, THE DECISION IS TO GET HIM ...
Journal: POLICE MAGAZINE  Volume:1  Issue:5  Dated:(NOVEMBER 1978)  Pages:36-42
Author(s): K CHAPIN
Corporate Author: Criminal Justice Publications, Inc
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 7
Sponsoring Agency: Criminal Justice Publications, Inc
New York, NY 10017
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: POLICE POLICIES AND PRACTICES RELATIVE TO HIGH-SPEED PURSUITS ARE DISCUSSED, WITH REFERENCE TO A SURVEY OF EIGHT STATE AND LOCAL POLICE AGENCIES.
Abstract: THE DISCUSSION OPENS WITH A DESCRIPTION OF A HIGH-SPEED CHASE THAT INVOLVED 20 CARS AND RESULTED IN INJURIES TO 3 PEOPLE AND SERIOUS DAMAGE TO 2 VEHICLES. THE CHASE WAS UNUSUAL ONLY IN THAT IT LASTED MORE THAN 30 MINUTES AND COVERED 26 MILES; INJURIES AND VEHICLE DAMAGE ARE COMMON CONSEQUENCES OF HIGH-SPEED PURSUITS. THE WRITTEN POLICIES AND UNWRITTEN GUIDELINES OF THE SURVEYED AGENCIES INDICATE THAT POLICE ARE BECOMING MORE SELECTIVE ABOUT WHOM THEY PURSUE. THERE IS ALSO EVIDENCE THAT POLICE CHASES ARE BECOMING MORE SOPHISTICATED AND LESS RAUCOUS. BUT THE SURVEY ALSO POINTS TO SOME OF THE PROBLEMS IN ESTABLISHING RULES FOR HIGH-SPEED PURSUIT. ONE REASON BEHIND THE RELUCTANCE OF MANY POLICE SUPERVISORS TO GRANT THEIR OFFICERS UNLIMITED FLEXIBILITY IN HANDLING PURSUIT SITUATIONS IS THAT, IN THE HANDS OF SOME OFFICERS, PATROL CARS DRIVEN AT HIGH SPEED ARE LIKE LOADED GUNS. POLICE OFFICIALS UNANIMOUSLY RECOGNIZED THE NEED FOR BETTER DRIVER TRAINING IN THEIR DEPARTMENTS. OFFICIALS ALSO NOTED THAT A GOOD DISPATCHER IS ESSENTIAL FOR SUCCESSFUL PURSUITS. THE DISPATCHER INFORMS THE PURSUING OFFICER OF ROAD AND TRAFFIC CONDITIONS AND COORDINATES OTHER UNITS AS THEY ARE BROUGHT INTO THE CHASE. IN ADDITION, THE DISPATCHER IS REMOVED FROM THE ACTION AND IS A CALMING INFLUENCE. DESPITE RELIANCE ON DISPATCHERS AND GUIDELINES, MOST DESK OFFICERS BELIEVE THAT THE PERSON IN THE BEST POSITION TO MAKE THE INSTANTANEOUS JUDGMENTS CALLED FOR IN PURSUIT SITUATIONS IS THE PURSUING OFFICER. POLICE NOTE THAT THE THRILL OF THE CHASE PLAYS A PART IN PURSUIT SITUATIONS, ESPECIALLY FOR YOUNGER OFFICERS. AGENCIES SURVEYED ARE THE STATE POLICE DEPARTMENTS OF MASSACHUSETTS, MICHIGAN, NEW YORK, AND GEORGIA, AND THE LOCAL DEPARTMENTS OF BOSTON AND CAMBRIDGE, MASS.; CHARLOTTE, N.C.; AND ANAHEIM, CALIF. (LKM)
Index Term(s): California; Georgia (USA); Massachusetts; Michigan; Municipal police; New York; North Carolina; Police decisionmaking; Police pursuit driving; State police
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=51703

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