Community Safety: The Push for Smarter Police Pursuits
The High Stakes of Police Pursuits
Virginia Beach, VA, Sept. 22, 2023 — In the past forty years, over 4,200 people who were just going about their day ended up paying the ultimate price because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time. They became innocent bystanders caught in police pursuits’ paths—a sobering statistic that calls for urgent action and policy reform.
But it’s not all doom and gloom; there’s light on this horizon with tech innovations like pursuit management tools. These advancements offer smarter ways to catch bad guys without turning our streets into race tracks. We need more than good intentions; we need solid strategies that prioritize community and officer safety—to make sure these numbers don’t keep climbing.
Diverse Pursuit Policies in North Carolina
Mooresville and other police departments across the Tar Heel State have decided to upgrade their pursuit policies and their tech. Without statewide guidelines to stitch together a cohesive approach, each police department must craft its pursuit policy.
This inconsistency could mean that what’s considered too risky in one county might be standard practice just across the line. It’s not just about geography; it’s about safety and clarity—or rather, the lack thereof—for both officers and civilians alike.
The absence of unified rules leaves us grappling with questions: should we chase at all costs or hold back for safety? North Carolina currently lacks an answer on this pressing issue. But as more voices join the conversation on public safety reform, change may soon be on the horizon.
Federal Recommendations for Police Pursuits
The Department of Justice recently stepped in with new guidelines to dial back high-octane police pursuits.
The DOJ now urges officers to reserve such chases for suspects involved in violent crimes—those who pose an imminent threat that outweighs pursuit risks. It’s not about cutting slack; it’s about tightening reins where necessary to protect lives first.
Technology as an Alternative
StarChase’s tagging and tracking technology echo these recommendations by providing safe alternatives to traditional pursuits. They let officers tag vehicles and track from afar—the digital equivalent of breadcrumbs leading right to suspects without all the carnage and destruction of a traditional pursuit.
Implementing Tagging and Tracking Technology
Real-life tools like StarChase’s pursuit management technology let police tag a suspect’s vehicle with a GPS tracker. Once tagged police get real-time updates on where a suspect is headed – all from a safe distance, without the chaos. With StarChase, a safe arrest can be made on law enforcement’s terms and not the suspect’s.
This approach is the difference between chaos and control during intense situations on our streets. By adopting such de-escalation tech, law enforcement agencies put everyone’s well-being first while still being able to make a safe suspect arrest.
Moving Forward with Pursuit Policy Reform
There’s a push toward pursuit policy reform that puts community safety and officer well-being front and center. The current state has each police department cooking up its own recipe for handling pursuits.
So, let’s tip our hats to those departments taking the bull by the horns now—implementing proactive measures themselves and letting tech play the hero. Tools like StarChase’s pursuit management systems are all about smarter—not riskier—approaches. That’s what police departments need until cohesive policies are established that ensure every chase doesn’t have to be a race against time—or worse, lives.
Think about it: safer streets, fewer tears. That’s the heart of smarter police pursuits.
It boils down to this: tag ’em and track ’em without risking lives. And let’s get serious about data—because knowledge powers reform.
Tackling pursuit policy reform isn’t a sprint; it’s more like a marathon with hurdles at every turn. But we’re gaining ground, one smart strategy at a time—for our community’s sake.