Police chases climb in 2020

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By Nick Seebruch
Police chases climb in 2020
Cornwall Police Services cruiser.

CORNWALL, Ontario – Cornwall Police Service (CPS) Chief Danny Aikman presented his service’s annual Suspect Apprehension Pursuit report to the Cornwall Police Services Board at their meeting on Thursday, March 4, 2021.

The report outlines instances where CPS officers pursue a vehicle that has failed to stop after an officer has tried to pull them over.

In 2020 there were 18 instances where an officer initiated a pursuit of a suspect vehicle. Each instance where an officer initiated a pursuit was found to be in compliance with CPS policies. One pursuit resulted in an accident, but no injuries occurred.

Of the pursuits initiated, 16 of them were ultimately terminated by the officer. Chief Aikman explained that an officer could terminate a pursuit for a variety of reasons, including risk to public safety.

From the pursuits that were followed up on, there were six arrests and 38 charges laid.

Last year did see an increase in pursuits from 2019 and 2018, which had 11 and 13 pursuits respectively.

“It is interesting that there were hardly any cars on the road, but there were more pursuits,” remarked Police Board Chair Glen Grant.

“Maybe because there were less cars on the road that there was more speeding,” Chief Aikman replied.

The conclusion of the report determined that CPS officers were diligently following service and provincial policy that govern police pursuits.

“The three year trend indicates that although pursuits still occur, officers of the CPS have become accustomed to the policy governing pursuits and are showing due diligence in complying with policy,” the report’s conclusion reads. “The directive has been reviewed by the Sergeant of the Training Branch, and based on the statistical data, there are no changes recommended.”

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