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California leads the nation
in the number of innocent victims killed in pursuits

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Report for 2001:
370 Americans killed in pursuit-related crashes, more than a third were innocent bystanders
52 people were killed in California; 24 of these people were not even in a car being pursued and some -- especially the children -- in the fleeing cars were just as innocent as other victims of pursuit.
In 2002 the number grew to 386 deaths, click here.
California is still in the lead with 50 deaths and 17 of those killed were not in a car being pursued.  Since reporting of pursuit deaths is mandatory but not enforced, these figures are underreported.

In 2003, again more innocent people are killed on California roads as the result of high-speed chases for non-violent suspects. California leads the nation with 51 deaths, click here. It would take the combined total of deaths from the following states to equal California's pursuit fatalities: New York, Texas AND Alaska, Delaware, Connecticut, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, and Wyoming.
PursuitWatch.org in Winter Park, Florida, and Victims of Pursuits in Jackson, Mississippi, both report the national average is closer to 450 deaths annually. Injuries -- many of them permanent -- have escalated into the thousands. When innocent bystanders are killed in pursuits, law enforcement is often quoted in news reports as saying, "It was not a chase. We were just 'catching up' or 'backing off.'" Consequently, these deaths and injuries are not reported as fatalities and injuries from police pursuits. Also, sometimes when an innocent person, officers or the fleeing suspect die later at the hospital, those deaths are not reported either.
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