FPC grants Chief Flynn 30-day extension to make changes to MPD’s pursuit policy

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Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission

MILWAUKEE -- Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn will have 30 more days to craft a new vehicle pursuit policy. The Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission (FPC) granted him an extension on Thursday, July 27th -- the original deadline.

The FPC told Chief Flynn to amend the policy to allow officers to chase more vehicles on Milwaukee's streets. Both sides say they are willing to find a compromise.

"I want to craft a policy that meets your concerns and is consistent with city attorney advice," said Flynn.

Ed Flynn

Under the current policy, police do not chase suspects unless they believe the vehicles are connected to a violent crime. The modifications to the policy would allow officers to go after vehicles that have been identified by the department as high-value targets. That can mean they're associated with drug-related crimes or their drivers have refused to stop for the police in the past.

"He received direct orders from his superiors at the Fire and Police Commission and he's asking for an extension. Obviously, this is an attempt to try and undermine and circumvent the intent and will of the Fire and Police Commission as it pertains to the pursuit policy," said Milwaukee Alderman Tony Zielinski.

The chief now has until August 27th to make amendments. He says in the next 30 days, he will consult with other big departments on their policies to find out what is working.

"We're going to do our due diligence here. I'm not going to drag my feet. I'm not making excuses to not follow the directive of the FPC. We will craft a new policy," Flynn said.

The FPC chairman says the commission is open to compromise, and ready to work together to make changes.

"There will probably be some back and forth with the city attorney, some questions, some interfacing with the department as we kind of work through the different issues," said Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission Chairman, Steven DeVougas.

Ed Flynn

Chief Flynn changed the policy in 2010 after several innocent bystanders were killed.

Flynn, frustrated, sat down with FOX6's Ted Perry Tuesday for a one-on-one interview, as he and the Fire and Police Commission are clearly at odds over some past and pending directives. CLICK HERE to view his full report.

Chief Flynn says changing the policy is only one remedy to crime in Milwaukee, and there are other variables at play. With this latest deadline, a new policy could be in place by mid-September.