Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Think for me.

Y'all tend to be a mostly reasonable group of people. Help me out here.

In 2007, there was a police chase that started in Raymond and ended in a car crash 11 miles later in Jackson. The crash killed an elderly woman. The driver of the other car was totally unscathed (of course, ugh). The family of the dead woman is suing the driver and the Jackson and Raymond police departments. Raymond's PD has already settled for an undisclosed amount.

Will y'all help me figure out exactly how the police department is responsible for this? It would not have happened if the idiot driver had stopped when she was supposed to.

I saw an interview with the lawyer (who hid his fangs well) and he said something along the lines of "why would the police chase someone with no priors and no warrants?" BECAUSE SHE RAN FROM THE POLICE AND YOU'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO DO THAT?

Anyway, y'all help me figure this out. I can usually find one of y'all that disagrees with me in any given circumstance.


Emma B. said...

The argument is that a high-speed chase is a pretty dangerous situation for bystanders, and that it's better to let the driver get away than to have some other person get killed over a $100 speeding ticket. Generally, they're situations the cops want to avoid, unless catching the criminal is important enough to justify the risk of life to other drivers and pedestrians.

The article doesn't say why the police were trying to stop the driver in the first place, but a CL article indicates it was for reckless driving. A police car chase is almost certainly more dangerous in that situation, because the addition of police isn't exactly going to help a dangerous or impaired driver become safer. The police chose to keep chasing the driver all the way from Raymond into downtown Jackson, rather than discontinuing the chase once they got into a heavily trafficked area. Their job is supposed to be to protect innocent people, and a high-speed car chase down State Street is a really bad way to go about doing that.

Interestingly, there were witness reports that the police were pursuing Karen Irby shortly before the wreck happened, and canceled the pursuit for safety reasons.

Melinda Barton said...

Emma's got it just right. You're not supposed to engage in a high speed chase unless you're trying to stop some worse crime that you know is happening, say you know there's a hostage in the vehicle. Chasing someone for reckless driving is just nuts and makes the situtation worse. You have their license plate, so you can go arrest them anytime.

Jen said...

I thought it was illegal to continue a pursuit when entering a heavily trafficed town or subdivision? Or am I in the wrong state again?! LOL!

I agree that they had her tag#, they should have backed off and went after her at her home. Running from the police justified a warrant for arrest.

I hate that someone got killed as a result of this and I don't know that I agree with suing over it. (Im not a big believer in lawsuits over things.)

So I am on the fence. :) haha

Dude, have you gone to BB's baby yet? he's beautiful!

Watercolor said...

Karen Irby was not being pursued. The police officer was pulling out of the side street heading the other way responding to another call. That he pulled out just after she passed was coincidental. He likely never saw the Irby car. The witness simply saw the blue lights in his rearview mirror when he looked back and assumed it was behind the Irby car. A later article cleared it up.

RhondaLue said...

Just another thing so the criminals can go free.

CRIMINAL:"They won't chase me if I get into a heavy traffic area so that'll be my goal! And I'll get off scott free. Sweet Beans"