To Chase or Not to Chase….That is NOT the Question

Jack Evans

“It is the policy of the Dallas Police Department that the safety of our officers and the public shall be a determining factor for initiating and/or terminating a foot pursuit.”

In 2012, The Dallas Police Department added a foot pursuit policy.  All chases, whether on foot or in a vehicle, are extremely dangerous.  That’s why the primary focus of this policy is officer safety.

This policy provides guidelines for officers that may be involved in a foot pursuit.  Not every encounter will be the same and the Department knows that; therefore, the totality of the circumstances is taken into consideration.

These guidelines provide strategies that can prevent pursuits. The officers are advised on tactical positioning, how to talk to suspects, as well as methods that can be used to take control of the situation.  Improving the way an officer conducts an investigation may prevent a suspect from fleeing.

If all other options are exhausted and the suspect flees, the officer is asked to take into consideration the risk involved. The Dallas Police Department has included the significant risks involved in the policy.

This policy does not stop officers from doing their job and catching the bad guys; it simply points out the risks and it shows different and safer options that can be used to still catch them.