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Geoffrey Alpert, chair, department of criminology and criminal justice, University of South Carolina, is a nationally recognized expert on police violence, pursuit driving and training. He says, "While you cannot completely restrict police pursuits, they should be reserved for suspects who have committed violent felonies.

Illinois Law Enforcement Executive Forum
National Institute of Justice
Pursuit Facts & Kristie's Law
Other Facts:
The Federal Bureau of Investigation reported in 2002 that 400-500 people are killed every year in chases.
More than 3,000 people have been killed in police chase crashes in the past 10 years, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and more than 1/3 of the deaths were innocent bystanders.
Law enforcement agencies in some cities and states have adopted restrictive pursuit policies to eliminate unwarranted pursuits that often lead to injuries and tragic deaths of innocent bystanders and the officers themselves.  Putting public safety first are agencies in Baltimore; St. Louis; Orange County, Florida; Orlando, Florida; Miami, and Peachtree City, Georgia.

Movement to reform police pursuits gaining ground.
Pursuit Policies
From Geoffrey Alpert's research:
And finally, the policy standards applied to the evaluation of a pursuit as well as to the decision to continue a pursuit needs to include the following three questions:
  1. If the pursuit were to result in injury or death, would a reasonable person understand why the pursuit occurred or was necessary?

  2. Is the need to immediately catch the suspect more important than the risk created by the pursuit?

  3. Do the dangers created by the pursuit exceed the dangers posed by letting the perpetrator escape?

Nine ways to Recognize Good Pursuit Policy

Jim Phillips of has analyzed hundreds of pursuit policies and was recently praised for his efforts in working on policy revisions in the State of Florida. Here is what Jim said after he reviewed the 2002 Chico (California) Pursuit Policy: "The policy is so long, tedious, contradictive, vague, and useless.  It is impossible to fix.  Trash it and start over." 

Pursuit Training
The following information from 2003-2005 was posted on, but the stories are no longer linked.
"The typical police officer is given a 2-5 day school in their basic academy on driving," reported between 2003-2005. "Maybe 4-8 hours of that was spent on pursuit training."
Making News
An authority on police driver training, Sgt. Travis Yates of Tulsa, Okla., says that very few police academies provide lengthy training on pursuit driving. Yates, who has coordinated driver training of Tulsa police officers for about seven years, runs a Web site called
"You give some training in the academy, but if a police officer gets in a pursuit years later, how much training has he had?" said Yates in a telephone interview Friday.
A patrol car is a potential weapon, he said, and departments say "Here are the keys" without the needed training.
"It puts the officers in a bad position," said Yates. "I think we're really putting officers at a disadvantage."
Police Sites
Illinois Law Enforcement Executive Forum
National Association of Police Organizations
Peace Officer Standard and Training (Post)  (Search for Kristie's Law Forum)



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