The Atlanta Police Department recently announced that they would have a zero-pursuit policy in place effective immediately. The reasons for the new policy are several; one huge reason is the cost to innocent bystanders. Many of the people who are injured or killed in car accidents involving a police pursuit are innocent bystanders. Another reason is that fatal car accidents are the most common cause of an officer being killed on duty. One of the other reasons given is that the justice system does not currently take into account the actions of the fleeing criminal as a part of the crime that was committed.
11 Alive reports that a fatal crash in Atlanta involved a stolen Dodge Charger that slammed into another vehicle. The crash occurred on at about 9:20 a.m. on New Year’s Eve at the intersection of Joseph E. Lowery Boulevard and Donald L. Hollowell Parkway.
The Atlanta Police reported that a patrol officer spotted an orange Dodge Charger that was believed to have been stolen out of Dekalb County. Once the Charger passed him, the officer made a U-turn to get behind the vehicle and check the license plate. The Charger ended up being stolen. As soon as the police officer pulled in behind the Charger, it sped away.
At the intersection, the driver of the Charger ran a red light and slammed into the back of a Toyota Corolla. The female driver of the Toyota was taken to a hospital, where she was pronounced dead. The driver and the passenger of the Dodge Charger fled from the scene. They are still at large.
The APD did an investigation to determine if the police officer engaged in a pursuit. There is currently no evidence to indicate that the officer was pursuing the suspects at the time of the crash.
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