The ”no-pursuit” policy lie                                                                         Back

"Since XYPD changed their policy to a "no-pursuit" policy..."
or:
"The ZPD policy is a no-pursuit policy."


These types of statements are often made in news stories or quoted from law enforcement spokesmen. At the very least these statements are misleading, or the result of sloppy research, and at their root lays a calculated lie. The lie that categorizes any restriction in policy as a "no-pursuit" policy. There are approximately 13,500 law enforcement agencies in the United States, and while I only have first-hand knowledge of a few dozen of their pursuit policies, I am confident that very few, if any, of them do not pursue under any circumstance. Not even those who favor greatly restricting police pursuits advocate a "no-pursuit” policy. Consequently, any reporter who characterizes a pursuit policy as "no-pursuit", or allows such a characterization to go unchallenged, is guilty of perpetuating the lie. The lie is calculated to lead uninformed citizens to dismiss any effort to reasonably address problems with pursuit policy and practice and makes it much harder for those who advocate smarter and safer pursuit policy to get a fair public hearing of their views.

Jim Phillips
11/23/03



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