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Read Opinion Articles & Letters to Editors

Editorial Columns

Washington Post: Facts, Please June 16, 2007
The Arizona Republic: Fatal police chase, actions by officers raise questions November 2, 2005
Enid.com (Oklahoma): Police chases need to be worth risk of injury or death October 30, 2005
Indianapolis Star: Isn't it time to rethink high-speed pursuits? August 9, 2005

Ventura County Star: Police pursuits need adjusting June 16, 2005

Indianapolis Star: The chilling reality of hot pursuits May 24, 2005
NC Times.com: Cops forget the innocent in high-speed chases May 12, 2005
L.A. Police Chase Ends In Fatal Showdown - Live On TV May 12, 2005
Ventura County Star: State pursuit policy needed; police, bystanders' lives at stake April 6, 2005
StarNewsOnline.com: Needless chases, needless deaths March 25, 2005
KSBW-TV: Editorial: High-Speed Chases March 11, 2005
www.pursuitwatch.org: Battle lines are drawn over Kristie's Law in California March 3, 2005
The Cincinnati Post: High-speed chases are risky November 26, 2004

Chico News & Review: Give the cops some space September 9, 2004 (See Rebuttal and Oct. 1, 2004, letter to editor below)

Chico Enterprise-Record: Aanestad bravely strikes out on his own May 30, 2004

Crain's Chicago Business: Chicago taps brakes on cop car chases May 29, 2004

Ventura County Star Editorial: Police pursuit law is overdue April 14, 2004
San Francisco Chronicle: Slow the cop chases March 11, 2004
Fresno Bee: CHP needs to pursue new policy
pursuitwatch.org: Time for a Change November 15, 2003
driveandstayalive.com: Number of Police Pursuits Drop Dramatically in Los Angeles August 20, 2003
New LAPD policy review: Injuries to third parties, 18 in 2002, compared to 4 in 2003, have decreased by 78%. 4 LAPD officers were injured in 2003 compared to 6 in 2002: a 33% decrease.
Hattiesburg (Mississippi) American: Will public continue to pay price? April 23, 2003

Ventura County Star: CHP must change policy January 31, 2003
USA Today: Police pressured to call off chase January 5, 2003
theage.com: A rethink, please on police pursuits June 21, 2002
Nationwide law enforcement departments are adopting restrictive pursuit policies. Read more.
 

Opinion Articles

A question for syndicated columnist, Thomas Sowell:
How many deaths before it's not okay?

"Some innocent driver or pedestrian," writes Thomas Sowell in a September column that promotes police chases at any and all cost.

I, Candy Priano, regularly read Sowell's column, and I don't recall him describing other crime victims the way he describes the crime victims listed on this Web site. Sowell wants us to believe he cares about the innocent people who sacrifice their lives in police chases, but he doesn't show it. Read my rebuttal on behalf of Voices Insisting on PursuitSAFETY (VIPS),
right here.

My response to Thomas Sowell is posted on The Conservative Voice, right here, where others are posting their opinions.

Appellate Court judges speak out for citizens' safety
Simply adopting the policy is sufficient under the current state of the law.
"But the law in its current state simply grants a 'get out of liability free card' to public entities that go through the formality of adopting such a policy. ...
Unfortunately, the adoption of a policy which may never be implemented is cold comfort to innocent bystanders who get in the way of a police pursuit. We do not know if the policy was followed in this instance, and that is precisely the point: We will never know ...
This opinion was published November 26, 2002, and Californians are still waiting for real changes in our state's outdated and dangerous pursuit practices.
Police-pursuit bill requires teeth
"Can you think of any other public-safety priority where thoughtful policy is developed, adopted and then legally ignored? All other law enforcement policies require accountability. Accountability should never be feared. It is critical to good government." —The late Jim Phillips, pursuitwatch.org, June 2005.

San Francisco Chronicle Open Forum. California's Senate Bill 719, at best, is an after-the-fact piece of legislation: after a child is killed, after a young father is facially disfigured for life from a fiery crash, after a mother and three teens are killed in a pursuit through a school zone at 3 p.m., or after a baby's arm is severed. These are real-life tragedies of police chases gone very badly awry in California. And yes, the families of these victims blame the people who flee for these tragedies. But just as true, Californians deserve a more preventive measure to ensure that our pursuit policies and practices will save lives.
published: 07/28/2005
In hot pursuit of a motorcycle
newleader.com
Police pursuits have become very hot topics across the country because more non-involved civilians have been killed or injured seriously and are witnesses to "road rage" and police chases, all in the name of apprehending fleeing motorist. Please understand, I have the greatest respect for the duties and responsibilities of law enforcement officers who proudly put on their uniforms knowing each time they report for duty their lives are in jeopardy by enforcing the law and providing protection for all. However, many citizens are extremely concerned with the dangers involved in high speed police chases. published: 05/22/2005
Killing the Innocent Does Not Save Lives
Commentary by Albert Boland, Grandfather of Innocent Victim
published: 04/25/2005
Kristie's Law would control cop chases
Latest bizarre pursuit shows need for changes in California pursuit policy, writes Robert L. Bastian Jr. The Los Angeles Police Department has no explanation for why, on the night of last March 31, a motorcycle officer continued a wild pursuit of a forgery suspect on motorcycle through Westside red lights onto Beverly Hills sidewalks.
published: 04/11/2005
Police pursuits and policy
Quite often we hear that the pursue/no pursue decision in police chases has to be made in a split second, and hat we should allow some latitude to officers if they don't follow policy or make poorly reasoned choices of that pursuit policy should give space for wide discretion in pursuits. I can best demonstrate the fallacy of this line of reasoning by ... (See Editorial above.)
published: 09/23/2004
Pursuing justice for 'lost' crime victims
Crime victims leave behind families who fear that their loved ones will be forgotten. For decades and even today, innocent people killed in police pursuits are considered acceptable collateral damage. Families of pursuit victims don't even have a chance to fear that their loved ones will be forgotten because they quickly learn that their children, siblings, parents, grandparents are the 'lost' crime victims.
published: 05/26/2004


Kristie's Law essentially bans police pursuits
Re: The Star's April 14 editorial, "Police pursuit law is overdue" (For the Star's column, click here): To pursue or not to pursue? That is the question. Police officers are expected to make critical decisions on a regular basis. One decision that occurs all too frequently is whether or not to initiate a vehicle pursuit.
published: 05/02/2004
Officers must be accountable for innocent victims of pursuits
April 26, 2004—The state Legislature should enact SB1866, the bill to repeal police immunity for injury-causing police chases where the public is not otherwise in "imminent peril." The legislation promotes public safety, fairness and governmental accountability. Its only flaw is that it does not go far enough, making injury to innocent bystanders a matter of strict liability.
Daily Journal Newswire Article

published: 04/24/2004
 
Protect and Serve ... Always
An officer who realizes his job is to "protect and serve."
published: circa January 2004


Letters

There but for the grace of God go I January 24, 2006

Officer doesn't tell all September 18, 2005

Don't second-guess police September 8, 2005

Deadly Pursuit August 9, 2005

Pursuits aren't outlawed June 19 , 2005

Learn from Maryland's error June 6 , 2005

Public safety first; ban plea-bargain deals December 30, 2004

Pursue pursuit policy October 1, 2004


Sensible restrictions on police pursuits is bill's intent May 13, 2004

Make pursuits safer January 13, 2004

CHP lacks compassion for innocent victim December 3, 2003

Inappropriate Chase in School Zone April 29, 2003

Not feeling safe now! April 29, 2003

A weak argument for police chases November 29, 2002

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