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3-Year-Old Killed When Hit by a Car Fleeing Police


Posted on behalf of D'Amico & Pettinicchi, LLC on Nov 22, 2017 in Car Accidents

police car on road at nightOn Nov. 21, a three-year-old was killed after being hit by a car that was fleeing police. The car hit another vehicle before going off the road, hitting a light pole and crashing into four people on the sidewalk, including the toddler.

Connecticut State Police (CSP) in an unmarked car attempted to stop the driver around 3:45 p.m. Unfortunately, the driver refused to stop and ran from the officers, who gave chase. After the crash, the driver attempted to flee on foot but the officers chased him down and arrested him.

The other three people who were hit on the sidewalk were taken to the hospital for treatment, with one of the victims sustaining serious injuries. The man in the vehicle that was struck by the fleeing driver was also injured and taken to the hospital, but the severity of his injuries is not known.

Authorities are still investigating the accident and are asking anyone with information to contact CSP by calling 2003-267-2200 or texting TIP711 to 274637.

Police Procedures for Pursuing Suspects

Tuesday's fatal crash shows the danger of police chases. These situations endanger the lives of not only the officers and the suspects they are chasing, but pedestrians and other drivers who are nearby. 

This is why the Connecticut Department of Public Safety has established procedures for police officers involved in these situations to try to prevent injuries and deaths.

Initiating a Pursuit

The pursuing police officer has the authority to decide whether to pursue a fleeing suspect. However, the decision to pursue must be based on the conclusion that the immediate danger to the officer and the public is outweighed by the potential danger to the public if the fleeing individual remains at large.

When making a decision, the officer must take the following factors into consideration:

  • Road conditions
  • Whether it is necessary to immediately apprehend the suspect to protect the public or police officers
  • Population density and vehicular and pedestrian traffic
  • Weather
  • The performance capabilities of the officer's car and the vehicle being pursued
  • The presence of others in the police car

Pursuing Suspects

Once an officer decides to pursue a suspect, he or she must follow certain procedures:

  • When pursuit starts, he or she must activate the appropriate warning system, including an audible warning device.
  • The officer must immediately notify communications personnel of the location, direction and speed of the pursuit, along with a description of the pursued vehicle and the purpose of the stop. The officer must also continue to provide updates.
  • The officer must drive with consideration for the safety of persons and property.
  • Unless there are special circumstances, the pursuit should consist of no more than three vehicles and no other vehicles can join unless they are instructed to participate by a supervisor.
  • When possible, the patrol units with the most prominent markings and emergency lights should be used to pursue.
  • All intervention techniques short of deadly force should be used when it is possible to do so safely and when the officer utilizing them has been appropriately trained. These techniques could include boxing in the vehicle or using controlled termination devices.
  • Firearms should not be discharged unless it is necessary to protect a police officer or innocent person from the imminent use of deadly physical force.

Terminating a Pursuit

The officers who are chasing the suspect must continually re-evaluate and assess the pursuit situation and should terminate it whenever they reasonably believe the risks associated with continued pursuit are greater than the public safety benefit of apprehending the suspect. The supervisor can also terminate the pursuit if he or she determines that the risks outweigh the benefit of apprehending the suspect.

Pursuits can also be ended when the police officers are unable to communicate with supervisors, communications or other police officers.

Waterbury Car Accident Lawyers

If you have lost a loved one in a collision, a car accident attorney in Waterbury can help you determine your legal options. Our personal injury attorneys are prepared to pursue compensation for all of the damages you and your family have suffered because of your loss. We understand the anguish that comes with losing a loved one in an accident that could have been prevented.

We offer a free, no obligation legal consultation and do not charge for our services unless you receive compensation.

Schedule a free consultation right now or call us at (866) 848-7077.