Posts Tagged ‘police’

High-speed chase lawsuit

On May 10, in Branford, Connecticut, Sergeant John Finkle attempts to pull over a BMW that is driving erratically; the driver, Thomas Bishop, later charged with DUI, pulls into a motel parking lot, and then speeds back out. Police say they ended the chase because of bad weather, but at some point before or after that Bishop smashed his car into a van at an intersection (allegedly at 75 mph), killing one and maiming another. Naturally, the lawsuit filed by the family of the victim is against the town, the chief of police, and Sgt. Finkle. (Marissa Yaremich, “Family will sue in fatal car chase”, New Haven Register, Sep. 20; Dave Phillips, “Police facing lawsuit from injured crash victim”, Branford Review, Sep. 20). Even if one accepts the questionable premise that it is the pursuer, rather than the pursued, who should be primarily responsible for such a crash, the fact that criminals will be more likely to engage in high-speed chases that endanger people if police have a policy of stopping pursuit seems not to enter into the equation of the lawsuit or the press coverage of the lawsuit.