The issue of when — and how — such pursuits should happen had fueled debate about whether a fired sergeant acted appropriately when he shot and killed Kevin Alexander Brown last year.
The policy establishes criteria officers should evaluate before beginning a chase and how they should respond during a pursuit.
According to the policy, officers must gauge the risk to themselves, fellow officers, suspects and bystanders. The two-page policy says that officers should consider whether a suspect may be armed and the availability of backup officers, and it requires them to radio a description of the suspect and location of the chase to dispatchers.
It also says officers should consider ending a chase if the suspects' identities are known and if they are not thought to be an immediate threat.
"The purpose of this policy is to facilitate the safe apprehension of a suspect who flees on foot to reduce the risk of injury to the officer, suspect and public," the policy says.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Austin foot chase restrictions intended to reduce risk
Having discussed police departments' chase polices for vehicles on Grits in the past, I was interested to see this story from the Austin Statesman ("Austin police adopting new foot chase policy," Oct. 15) about the Austin police creating a more restrictive policy for foot chases: