STUDY: High-Speed Chases Claim Innocent Lives; Half of People Killed Were Not Suspects

An average of 329 people are killed in car chases per year, prompting many police departments to review their policies. Omar Villafranca reports.

According to a USA TODAY report …

More than 5,000 bystanders and passengers have been killed in police car chases since 1979.

Almost every day, someone is killed during a high-speed chase between police and a suspect in the United States.

At least 11,506 people — only about half or 6,300 who were the actual fleeing suspects — were killed in police chases from 1979 through 2013. That’s an average of 329 a year — nearly one person a day for the 35-year period.

USA TODAY claims that the figures are likely underestimated because some police reports do not report that a chase occurred.

In California, studying records of 63,500 chases from 2002 through 2014 show that only 5% were an attempt to nab someone suspected of a violent crime, usually assault or robbery, and only 168 of the chases were pursuing a known murder suspect.

See more from USA TODAY …
High-speed police chases have killed thousands of innocent bystanders



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