City leaders to meet, weigh in on police pursuits after FPC report released

MILWAUKEE -- Some Milwaukee aldermen are calling for a policy change when it comes to police pursuits. City leaders will discuss the Milwaukee Police Department's vehicle pursuit policy Friday morning, May 19th.

2016 Vehicle Pursuit Report

The Public Safety Committee will meet at City Hall at 9 a.m. They'll discuss data from a recent Fire and Police Commission's 2016 Vehicle Pursuit Report --  which shows suspects are getting younger, more reckless, and they're often getting away.

Even when police pursue a suspect, it only ends with an arrest roughly 37 percent of the time. Some aldermen say the data points to the need for change.

The statistics show pursuits increased last year -- when we saw the most since 2012. But the data also shows a quarter of those incidents ended in crashes -- hurting as many as 36 innocent bystanders and four officers in 2016.

MPD chase data

MPD chase data

The pursuit policy was changed seven years ago in an effort to cut down on pursuit-related injuries. Now, officers pursue if they believe the suspects have been involved in a violent crime.

Murphy and other aldermen argue criminals behind the wheel are simply refusing to stop for police and getting away with crimes while getting away from the cops.

The report also shows the median age for offenders has dropped from 40 years old to just 18 in the last decade. Alderman Murphy said that has to change, and he's looking into ways the city can target young people and make them aware of the consequences of reckless driving.