5 EYEWITNESS NEWS investigates: Changing how they chase

February 18, 2019 06:04 AM

Dozens of law enforcement agencies in Minnesota have banned officers from chasing drivers at high speeds, unless there is a violent suspect behind the wheel.

However, 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS Investigative Reporter Ryan Raiche found that's not the case in most departments across the state.

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RELATED: Expert on High Speed Chases for Low Level Violations: 'Let Them Go'

Police chases in Minnesota are happening now more than ever before, up more than 170 percent in seven years.

Innocent lives are often caught in the middle.

The 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS investigative team analyzed the pursuit policies at more than 200 police departments.

The team found the vast majority of departments allow officers to decide when to chase and for how long.

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS showed its findings to a nationally-renowned expert who has studied chases for more than 30 years and who said, "We are still seeing the majority of departments leaving an enormous number of decisions to the officers who have to make them very quickly … We are putting officers at a disadvantage. We are forcing them to do what the chief should do and that is make a decision."

Monday at 10 p.m. on 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS, Raiche takes a look at what it would require to change how officers chase.

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