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Another fatality from a police chase – UPDATED

By johnboy - 16 November 2006 451

[First filed: November 14, 2006 @ 14:56]

The ABC is reporting that an elderly woman has died near the Woden Police Station after getting caught up in a high speed pursuit.

“The pursuit ended late this morning when two cars collided in south Canberra. Police have confirmed an elderly woman died after her car was hit about 11:30am AEDT outside the Woden Police Station.”

While in principle supporting the idea that police should chase people who run away from them, how many lives are being saved compared to how many we’re losing?

UPDATED: The Canberra Times has gone into overdrive today, we get three local stories on their website, sadly it’s all the same story.

First up is Tamara Glumac’s effort to intensify the tragedy with tales of Christmas shopping interrupted by CARnage.

Then Victor Violante informs us that Amber Jane Westin, 21, of Higgins allegedly “appeared disoriented and was swerving on the road” as she tried to run from police in her crappy old car. Interestingly the description of the incident sounds more like an effort to stop a car and less like the “pursuit” described in the original reportage.

Then Tamara is back with ACT Chief Police Officer, Audrey Fagan, standing by her officers and the news that a scheduled review into the current pursuit guidelines is due next April.

What’s Your opinion?

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451 Responses to
Another fatality from a police chase – UPDATED
wagga_wagga 4:05 pm 14 Nov 06

Maybe they could switch their sirens for the Funeral March?

Seems more appropriate.

v_man_returns 3:57 pm 14 Nov 06

wagga wagga has a point, despite the fact his sentences are rarely finished – this is the internet though. It’s a shame that lady died, the police were chasing sure, but the person being chased is the one who hit the person, just like the Clea Rose case. It’s not not the cops hitting people.

futto 3:52 pm 14 Nov 06

I saw the outcome of accident. The speeding car went through a red light and cleaned her up. A hit like that and seatbelt won’t help.

Anyone losing their life to a criminal act is especially horrible. I hope that the people involved are brought to justice…

Absent Diane 3:48 pm 14 Nov 06

nyssa – your argument is hardly an argument either.

Ari 3:45 pm 14 Nov 06

Not wearing seat belt = one dead old lady.

That’s horseshit.

Somebody running from the cops dangerously is what killed her.

nyssa76 3:43 pm 14 Nov 06


Your argument (or lack thereof) looks shite because you can’t string a sentence along.

wagga_wagga 3:33 pm 14 Nov 06

Oh I get it,

Not wearing seat belt = one dead old lady.

“What a wonderful world ……”

Thumper – stop crying……..

Thumper 3:30 pm 14 Nov 06

Go fuck yourself Wagga, you’re full of shit and haven’t added one meaningful thing to this forum.

Thumper 3:29 pm 14 Nov 06

Probably true about the percentage of chases in relation to deaths.

This is without doubt a tragedy but a vexing issue.

I happened to see a Police chase not long ago. I’m pretty sure they got the little scumbags.

virgil99 3:29 pm 14 Nov 06

Pretty tough to blame the police for this.
Rumour says that they put on the siren for not wearing a seatbelt. Punter drove off fast, this is the result. Not really the police’s fault!

wagga_wagga 3:27 pm 14 Nov 06

And what does the Liberal party Policy say

“We need more police”

Go figure………..

Danman 3:19 pm 14 Nov 06

Simto – I guess you have apoint – the press dont care about car chases where nothing out of the normal happens.

Maybe some techo at CSIRO can work on a car mounted directional EMP gun.

Would be interesting

simto 3:12 pm 14 Nov 06

I think you’re indulging in analysis through reportage rather than analysis through actual stats here – there’s usually about two or three fatal high-speed chases reported on during a year.

I’d expect there’s way more police high-speed chases than that (plucking utterly from the top of my head, I’d guess there’s around half a dozen a week).

Assuming that’s the case (and please, anybody is entitled to correct me on this one), then the fatal high speed chases are less than 1% of all chases.

Yes, any death is a bad death and should be reported and investigated. But I don’t know whether such a tiny percentage of adverse consequences are enough to condemn the practice.

Mr Evil 3:11 pm 14 Nov 06

Engine immobilisers and compulsory death to all wankers who try to run from the Police. 🙂

Danman 3:09 pm 14 Nov 06

So what do people suggest the police do about this ?

if the police did not make chase – then the public would be up in arms about that as well.

As far as I can see they are in a lose lose situation.

Maybe they need to review their protocols for high speed pursuit in an urban area.

I dont know – If I had the answer I would not be working where I am now.

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