The second half of Sowell's sentence is intriguing and wraps in a couple of issues. He writes, " ... editorials are sure to appear, saying this would not have happened if the police had just let the high-speed driver go on his way without pursuing."
Voices Insisting on PursuitSAFETY, founded just this year, is a national organization devoted to families of innocent bystanders killed and maimed in police pursuits. At least one person a day dies as the result of a pursuit, a number that is neither necessary nor practical. Yes, editorials addressing pursuit safety will appear. Most criminals are caught by good detective work, not by a chance encounter and a chase.
Sowell wants you to believe we are "critics" of law enforcement. Yet, the quote he provides in his column is from the adult passenger in the fleeing car. Once again, the real issue: the killing and maiming of the innocent in order to promote police chases at any cost.
Advocates for pursuit safety are not in favor of letting reckless drivers— who become more reckless once the chase begins — to get away.
"Abandoning the pursuit does not mean the officer stops apprehension efforts; rather, the officer initiates other resources to bring about the apprehension," wrote Lt. John Specht, Hillsboro, Oregon, Police Department, in The Police Chief, The Professional Voice of Law Enforcement.
Since Sowell believes pursuing prevents untold future crimes, why not arrest us all and prevent all future crime? The late Jim Phillips of PursuitWatch.org first asked this question in 2004. He also stated, "Habitual lawbreakers and dangerous career criminals interact with the police on a regular basis. They are not masterminds and they will be caught."
And yes, once caught, let's hope our criminal justice system does its job and keeps them in jail. Unlikely, but we can always hope.