Police Pursuits In 2017 Far Outpacing Last year

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — A guy wanted for shoplifting in Burbank led police on a short foot chase after bailing from his pickup.  He did the best he could to get away, but he ran out of fuel and gave up on the front lawn of a Mormon Church.  This was the seventh pursuit in the Southland Thursday.

In 2017 there have been 639 chases, 122 more than all of 2016.

A few hours earlier, a scary end to a pursuit that started in Huntington Beach and ended in Norwalk. Police say the rape suspect crashed at the 605/105 freeway interchange, ran from his car, then jumped off the overpass.  He was injured and taken to the hospital his two children inside the car were checked out too for injuries from the crash.

Cell phone video captured one of the more unusual places where a pursuit ended today. The LAPD says they went after a woman who stole a U-Haul truck in South L.A. and drove onto the grounds of the L.A. Wholesale Produce Market in Downtown, barely missing several workers, crashing into at least two squad cars.  An officer opened fire, missed her, and then she put up a fight before officers arrested her and put a mask over her face so she wouldn’t spit on anyone.

In July, the L.A. County Grand Jury put out its first ever report on police pursuits. Their findings: they are way too many of them and they’re far too dangerous.  All police agencies, including the LAPD, have been re-evaluating the way they handle their chases. Most are now going into what they call a tracking mode, instead of lights and sirens right behind the car they’re chasing, they back off and let the helicopter keep track.

Police Tell CBS2’s Dave Lopez It’s Too Early To Tell If Tracking Mode Is Working

 

An LAPD captain tells me that they’re strictly focusing their cops to disengage as soon as an airship is overhead to prevent the driver from becoming a risk to public safety.

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