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Thread: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

  1. #1
    For a Level Playing Field RedFanAlways1966's Avatar
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    Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    This is a topic that is bothersome to me. The topic... when a person chooses to run from the police in a motor vehicle. Many lives are put at risk when this situation occurs... the police, you, me, our families, our friends and many tax-paying citizens of our communities. We hear about the topic from time-to-time. Many think the police should not pursue a person who is fleeing in a motor vehicle. But that is not what I want to discuss. I think a person who does this should be given a mandatory prison sentence of at least 5 years.

    We have mandatory sentences in our country for numerous crimes: drug dealing, drug possesion, carrying a firearm in a bar, usng a firearm while commiting certain crimes, etc. I am not here to argue those mandatory sentences. But why not have a mandatory sentence for a person who puts many innocent people at risk of death? We have all seen chases on TV. Many times the suspect has absolutely no concern for anyone. They run stopsigns, redlights, cross through dangerous intersections at high speeds, run up on sidewalks and through yards & slam into innocent vehicles. They also cause our hardworking officers to risk their lives by having to attempt to stop these suspects.

    Almost all police cruisers have dash-mounted cameras. So I find it hard to believe that a person will not be convicted of this obvious crime when they are on video. I for one would feel no sympathy for a person who risks the lives of many innocent people by running from the police. No sympathy. It definitely endangers more innocent lives than some idiot carrying a few grams of cocaine in his front-pocket.
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    Mod Law zombie-a-go-go's Avatar
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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    Yes.
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    Just The Big Picture macro's Avatar
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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    It's funny how the brunt of the criticism usually falls on the police in these situations, rather than the criminal. I do think there are some situations where police pursue these things too far, but they wouldn't be pursuing if a crime hadn't been committed first.

    Sounds like an excellent plan to me, RFA. I wonder how many people will stop to consider the prison sentence when placed in that situation, however? The law will serve to punish those who do this, and that's a good thing, but the main benefit as far as I'm concerned would be the deterrent factor. Whether it deters as hoped or not would remain to be seen, but I say give it a try.

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    RZ Chamber of Commerce Unassisted's Avatar
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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    Some departments have rules that the chasing is to be halted when the speed or the hazard reaches a certain point. I think there is merit to that approach.
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    CELEBRATION TIME RBA's Avatar
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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    Quote Originally Posted by Unassisted
    Some departments have rules that the chasing is to be halted when the speed or the hazard reaches a certain point. I think there is merit to that approach.
    And the criminals know this, so they are determine to be even more wreckless to evade the police.


    It's funny how the brunt of the criticism usually falls on the police in these situations, rather than the criminal.
    I don't think this is true. Most people support Law Enforcement. Yes there is criticism, but I don't think people are choosing the criminal over Law Enforcement Officers.

    And I agree, there should be mandatory jail time for offenders.
    Last edited by RBA; 02-25-2005 at 09:38 AM.

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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    I don't know other departmental policies, buat the Ohio State Highway Patrol lets each individual officer make the determination as to whether or not to continue a pursuit. Of course a shift supervisor can trump this at any point in time by ordering the pursuing officer to terminate the pursuit. I would have to agree with macro on his point that the criticism usually falls on the law enforcement agency. With this being the age of rampant lawsuits, many a law enforcement agency have banned pursuits altogether. Due to civil liability issues, many officers would just as soon let the violator get away as opposed to a crash being caused, someone getting hurt and hiring a smug attorney, and risk losing everything that they work hard for and literally risk their lives for. I know this is going to sound strange, but I have a lot of faith and trust in my wife for this reason. I have been a State Trooper here in Ohio for 8 years. I don't have anything but my cars titled in my name. My large assets are in either my wife's or my parent's names due to the fact that I don't want to lose them if a cicvil liability case ever goes sour for me.

    So for me, the short answer to a long response is a resounding YES, stiffer penalties should accompany a fleeing-eluding charge, regardless of what state you live in.

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    Just The Big Picture macro's Avatar
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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    Quote Originally Posted by BigRedHotPotato
    I don't think this is true. Most people support Law Enforcement. Yes there is criticism, but I don't think people are choosing the criminal over Law Enforcement Officers.
    It IS true. Every time an innocent person gets killed during a high-speed chase, the media and others immediately question the judgement of the officers and the policies of the police department, with little mention of the suspect whose choices started the whole thing in the first place. Police departments have been sued over these things, with one case going all the way to the Supreme Court in the mid to late 90s. I think the case came out of Sacramento, IIRC.

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    CELEBRATION TIME RBA's Avatar
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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    True, the vocal crowd will condemn the police. But all I am saying is most citizens support the police. I guess you can call it the silent majority.

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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    If the evading criminal kills anyone during the chase, they are charged with murder. Adding 5 years for just putting people at risk seems almost pointless to me, when if they do in fact hurt someone, they are punished for it.

    But I do see what you're saying. I just think giving someone 5 years is a little too much for not actually hurting anything.

    BRHP,

    I think it depends on who you talk to. Alot of people blame the police (sometimes rightfully so), and in my Law Enforcement class, they teach you that most don't really care for you too much.

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    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    Quote Originally Posted by macro
    Sounds like an excellent plan to me, RFA. I wonder how many people will stop to consider the prison sentence when placed in that situation, however?
    I think that's a good point. Most of the time a person who is the target of a high speed chase has done something very serious. They probably wouldn't care if fleeing from the police means 5 years in prison. In for a penny, in for a pound is probably their philosophy. In theory it's a good idea but really, how many criminals are going to be rational enough to say, "I'm going to give myself up because I sure don't want to spend 5 years in prison."

    TS, I don't know if you know this or not but a similar scenario happened here in Cincinnati recently. A man was trying to flee police after a purse snatching or something and he ran into an elderly woman in her car and she died because of injuries suffered from that. The man was charged, tried and convicted of murder.
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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    Most criminals are ignorant (if they werent ignorant then most jails would be empty) and don't use any common sense or even think about what they're doing, so I'm not so sure it would reduce high speed chases.

    Chip, do you agree with that law? IMO its a good one to have because it tries to keep wreckless criminals off the streets. I didn't hear about the scenario in Cincy, but if it wasn't for him, the poor lady would still be alive, so I think its right to charge him with murder.

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    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: Fleeing From Police In A Vehicle - Jail?

    Quote Originally Posted by TeamSelig
    Most criminals are ignorant (if they werent ignorant then most jails would be empty) and don't use any common sense or even think about what they're doing, so I'm not so sure it would reduce high speed chases.

    Chip, do you agree with that law? IMO its a good one to have because it tries to keep wreckless criminals off the streets. I didn't hear about the scenario in Cincy, but if it wasn't for him, the poor lady would still be alive, so I think its right to charge him with murder.
    Yeah, I do think it was a good idea to charge that guy with murder.
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