Police officers have a duty to keep the public safe. They have a responsibility to apprehend criminals, especially those who have committed violent crimes or who pose a danger to the public at large.
To achieve those aims, police officers sometimes pursue suspects at high speeds. When engaging in pursuits, officers must balance the risk that allowing a suspect to escape could put the public in jeopardy with the risk that a high-speed chase could endanger innocent people.
The number of police pursuits in Milwaukee jumped 155% from 2017 to 2018, increasing the probability of accidents due to police chase. If you are involved in a crash that occurred because of a police pursuit, you may have been transported to a hospital and treated for head trauma, whiplash, broken bones, or other serious injuries. You may be permanently disabled and unable to work. You and your family may be struggling to make ends meet.
A Milwaukee accidents caused by police chase lawyer may be able to help. The team at Ben Crump Law, PLLC, may be able to seek a financial award to compensate you for your medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering. Call our office today at (800) 598-7557 to speak with a member of our staff.
Milwaukee’s Policy on Police Pursuits
According to the Milwaukee Police Department’s policy on vehicle pursuits and emergency vehicle operation, “All personnel operating department vehicles shall exercise due regard for the safety of all persons. There are no assignments or tasks of such importance that they justify the reckless disregard of the member’s safety or the safety of other persons. Members must be mindful of the balance between achieving the goals of law enforcement while maintaining the public’s safety.”
A police officer may only initiate a pursuit if the officer knows or has probable cause to believe that a suspect “has committed, is committing, or is about to commit a violent felony;” “[t]he specific vehicle was used in or taken during the attempt or commission of a violent felony;” or “[t]he vehicle or occupant(s) present a clear and immediate threat to the safety of others and therefore the necessity of immediate apprehension outweighs the level of danger created by the vehicle pursuit.”
The policy also states: “A ‘refusal to stop’ pursuit, as previously defined within this policy, may be initiated and maintained for a lesser offense than described above. However, once the ‘refusal to stop’ pursuit becomes an ‘eluding/fleeing’ pursuit, as previously defined within this policy, justification for the pursuit must meet at least one of the criteria (subsection 1 or 2) above.”
For a free legal consultation with a police chase accidents lawyer serving Milwaukee, call (800) 598-7557
How Police Chases Can Injure Innocent People
When police officers pursue suspects, other people on the roads may be put in jeopardy. A suspect who is trying to escape the police may drive erratically. The person may drive at a high speed, weave from lane to lane, make sudden turns, drive the wrong way down a one-way street, and drive on sidewalks or in other areas where vehicles are not meant to go. Other drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians may not realize that they are in harm’s way and may get struck by a fleeing vehicle. Drivers may swerve to try to avoid danger and may instead strike other vehicles or pedestrians, or they may lose control and go off the road.
When motorists see flashing lights in their rear-view mirrors and hear a siren, they know that they should pull over to let a police officer pass. If a cruiser is traveling at a high speed and other drivers do not have enough time to react, however, a police car may strike another vehicle. If a police officer is pursuing a suspect and comes upon an area where traffic is backed up, the officer may be unable to stop before colliding with another car.
A police chase can also endanger one or more other individuals who may be in a car with the suspect but who may have done nothing wrong. For instance, the suspect may have kidnapped or carjacked someone. The person who is fleeing from police may have family members in the car, possibly even young children. Police officers may not be aware of other people in the car and may not realize that their attempts to catch a suspect may be putting the lives of innocent people in danger.
Milwaukee Police Chase Accident Lawyer Near Me (800) 598-7557
How a Milwaukee Accidents Caused by Police Chase Lawyer Can Help
Seeking compensation for losses stemming from a car crash can be challenging in many circumstances. In a case involving a police officer who was pursuing a suspect, it can be difficult to figure out exactly what happened, what the officer knew at the time, and whether the pursuit was justified.
A Milwaukee accidents caused by police chase lawyer can investigate to gather more information on the circumstances that led to the decision to engage in a pursuit, whether the chase was justified, whether the police officer followed departmental protocols, and whether the pursuit created an unreasonable risk to the public. If we find that the officer did not adhere to guidelines, we may be able to help you pursue financial compensation for your losses. Ben Crump Law, PLLC, does not shy away from tough cases. Contact our office today for a no-obligation consultation.
According to the Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission, you have a right to file a complaint against the City of Milwaukee Police Department. The FPC can investigate and may refer the matter to trial, to action, to mediation, or for policy training, or it may dismiss the complaint.
The FPC notes that it does not have the authority to award monetary damages. If you wish to seek a financial award, you may file a separate claim with the Milwaukee City Clerk. You, your agent, or your attorney will have to file a document stating the circumstances of the claim within 120 days of the event.
Contact a Milwaukee Accidents Caused by Police Chase Lawyer
If you were hurt in a car crash that occurred while a Milwaukee police officer was pursuing a suspect, Ben Crump Law, PLLC, may be able to pursue a financial award to compensate you for your medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering. You should not let worries about legal fees stop you from pursuing justice. Ben Crump Law, PLLC, operates on a contingency model. That means that if you ask us to help you seek a financial award, you will not have to pay us any money upfront. We will only collect a fee if we obtain a financial award on your behalf.
You do not have much time to act. Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC, today at (800) 598-7557 to have a Milwaukee accidents caused by police chase lawyer begin working on your case as soon as possible.