Maryland State Police Join High-Speed Pursuit Through Harford County; Chase Reached Speeds of 130 MPH (UPDATED)

Troopers from the Maryland State Police JFK Barrack joined other regional law enforcement agencies in a high-speed pursuit which swept through Interstate 95 in Harford County Wednesday afternoon.

The pursuit was initiated at 4:48 p.m. by Maryland Transportation Authority police after a license plate reader near the northbound Fort McHenry Tunnel flagged a 2008 Ford Focus driven by a man Delaware State Police identified as Louis J. Palumbo, 53, of Mercer, Pa. Palumbo was wanted on an outstanding warrant in Pennsylvania for probation violation, according to MTA Police spokesman Sgt. Jonathan Green.

Green said MTA police attempted to stop the vehicle near mile marker 60 without success. Maryland State Police joined the pursuit as it entered Baltimore County, taking it over from MTA police at the Perryville toll plaza.

The suspect’s vehicle eventually entered Delaware, where the pursuit was taken over by Delaware State Police with air support provided by Maryland State Police, according to Lt. Daniel Fairburn, commander of the State Police JFK Barrack.

Delaware State Police said the pursuit ended when Palumbo crashed into an abandoned vehicle on I-495 northbound near Philadelphia Pike, several miles from the Pennsylvania state line. The crash caused lane closures on that highway for approximately 45 minutes.

Palumbo sustained a minor injury, police said, and was transported by Maryland State Police helicopter to Christiana Hospital where he remained Thursday afternoon for observation.

When released, Delaware State Police said he would be charged with disregarding a police officer’s signal, and related traffic charges.

Fairburn said the pursuit lasted for approximately 50 miles through the JFK Barrack’s jurisdiction, and reached speeds between 100 and 130 mph.

Comments

  1. says

    What time did this first begin? It seems that one of the principals of journalism is often overlooked in the Patch – who, what, when, why, and where.

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    • Harford County says

      The pursuit was initiated at 4:48 p.m. by Maryland Transportation Authority police after a license plate reader near the northbound Fort McHenry Tunnel flagged a 2008 Ford Focus driven by a man Delaware State Police identified as Louis J. Palumbo, 53, of Mercer, Pa. Palumbo was wanted on an outstanding warrant in Pennsylvania for probation violation, according to MTA Police spokesman Sgt. Jonathan Green.

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  2. Voltaire says

    So the public was endangered for nearly 50 miles while police chased someone for a probation violation? That seems like a great risk to public safety for an issue where no one was in imminent danger of harm until the pursuit began.

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  3. Voltaire Can Suck My Ballz says

    How do you know what the original crime was? Total douchebag reply.

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    • chris says

      Exactly. People are so stupid. Even if he did have a “simple” violation, if the police dont chase them it gives way to every single criminal knowing that certain crimes will not warrant a chase.

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  4. Fed up says

    No, from the article it seems like the violation was speeding. It wasn’t until they caught him that they figured out the parole violation. So Voltaire’s point is valid – seems like the public was at significant risk for 50 miles. Thank God nobody was hurt. The question now is, when can we next expect this fine upstanding citizen back on our roads?

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  5. Rachel says

    I thought you were pretty clear, Aaron, lol. It does seem a bit extreme for violating probation, but unless you know what the original charge was, there’s no way of knowing the severity of the crime. One might assume if they are going to such lengths to avoid capture, there’s probably a good reason. So I suppose they assume the worst to protect the public. Besides, what are they suppose to do, let him go? Then I guess all the criminals would do the same to avoid capture.

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  6. noble says

    Wait, so you’re telling me the government knows where I am even without an EZ Pass????? I guess Big Brother doesn’t need no stinkin EZPass transponder to find out where I am after all. Dagnabbit.

    …for your sarcasm files.

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  7. Mostly Harmless says

    I actually saw the chase. Traffic was fairly heavy, but the car in question was not driving too erratically. (I have seen worse.) The only way I knew it was a chase was the two, then three, then four troopers (plus helicopter) that were following.

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  8. DENISE says

    WE WERE DRIVING ON 95 NORTHBOUND HEADING FROM 695 TOWSON, MD AREA TO ABERDEEN ON JANUARY 2ND 2013. NOTICING STATE TROOPERS ALONG THE INTERSTATE AND SITTING ON RAMP EXITS. AS WE PASSED THE 152 EXIT IN HARFORD COUNTY THERE WERE STATE TROOPERS HOLDING EXIT TRAFFIC UP. AS WE TRAVELED TOWARD THE ABERDEEN EXIT THERE MORE TROOPERS AND OTHER LAW ENFORCEMENTS OFFICERS ALL OVER THE HIGHWAYS INTERSTATE. THEY WERE SITTING IN THE BREAK DOWN LANES, OFF RAMP EXITS, IN TURN AROUND SPOTS SOME SEEM TO BE COMING OUT OF NO WHERE AT TIMES.
    MY HUSBAND COMMENTED ITS MUST BE A RUNNER THERE READY TO ENGAGE WITH. A WAYS UP THE INTERSTATE AFTER LOOKING IN THIS REAR VIEW MIRROR. MY HUSBAND SAID HERE THEY COME HE SEEN A CAR MOVING AT EXCESS SPEED WITH LAW ENFORCEMENTS RUNNING WITH THE VEHICLE. WE MOVED QUICKLY INTO THE FAST LANES PULL OVER AREA. MOVING ALONG IN THE LANE AT A MUCH SLOWER SPEED. EVERY TIME HE SEEM TO SAFELY YEILD BACK INTO TRAFFIC. ANOTHER CLUSTER OF HIGH SPEED POLICE CARS WOULD COME UP ON US AGAIN AT HIGH SPEED. NUMEROUS ATTEMPTS BEFORE FINALLY BEING ABLE TO GET BACK INTO THE LANE SAFELY. ITS THE ONLY PLACE WE COULD PULL OVER QUICKLY WITH OTHER MOVING TRAFFIC. A NEWS HELICOPTER AND A STATE POLICE CHOPPER SEEMS TO BE TOWERING ABOVE THE CHASE. JANUARY 2, IS MY BIRTHDAY AFTER IT WAS ALL OVER, I BELIEVE WE WERE VERY FORTUNATE TO GET OUT OF HARMS WAY SO FAST. MAYBE ON MY B-DAY WE MIGHT HAVE BEEN A LITTLE FAMOUS ON THE NEWS IN OUR SAND COLOR F-35 PICK UP :))). GLAD THERE WERE NO FATALITIES IN THE CHASE. SOMETIME YOU CAN BE IN THE WRONG PLACE AT THE WRONG

    WE WERE BLESSED ON MY BIRTHDAY THAT’S FOR SURE.

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    • says

      there is a “Caps Lock” buttun on your computer you should have serviced seems like it is stuck. Then again maybe your just an idiot. I’m sorry that was uncalled for name calling, needed but uncalled for.

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  9. says

    Im a truck driver. I was there and I had to say the chasethe run away driver put innocent ppl into risk but the State Troopers did as well. I though this criminal committed a serious crime..

    They should be ashamed. It wasn’t worth the public risk.

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  10. connie says

    OK I was there as well..the police were very cautious n the runner was not driving too irratic..I was going 70..along with traffic so I do not feel the police put us in harms way..besides the helo was right there..he wasn’t going any where..good job MD staties! !!

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  11. D says

    I was there also. We came within 50 feet of the chase shortly after entering into Delware on I-95. The driver(suspect) swept across 4 lanes from the fast lane all the way to the right hand shoulder. Traffic was heavy at this point and it was a gutsy move. A slew of MD state troppers, DE State police, and two helicopters followed. MD police shut down their pursuit just before the split for Philadelphia and New York CIty.

    To me it is incomprehensible that the police would pursue someone for 50+ miles and across state lines for a probation violation. As noted, this was around 5:00 pm on I-95 and traffic was not “light” by any stretch of the imagination. Anyone who is stating that it wasn’t a big deal, please get your heads examined as a high speed chase involving multiple jurisdictions and a MD State Police helicopter during rush hour is not a situation without serious risk to all involved. Not only did the suspect risk everyone’s lives but so did the State Police by pursuing. I can only hope that he was wanted for something very serious or was more of a risk at large than we know.

    On a side note, it was pretty epic to see a chase that close. My first and only experience like that. I’m glad it ended well but I think that’s just luck. MD should reevaluate there pursuit policy. Several years earlier, there was a fatal crash that resulted from a MoCo police officer pursuing a motorcycle on I-495. The officer’s car jumped the center divider and killed the occupants that were in the oncoming vehicle. Was it worth it for a few traffic tickets…you be the judge.

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  12. AndyRooneysFerociousEyeBrows says

    As an officer I watch many law enforcement related shows and I remember seeing a show where an Officer worked for an agency with a no chase policy. He attempted to make a simple traffic stop when the vehicle took off, the officer followed briefly and then discontinued pursuit. Later the plates matched a vehicle that had abducted a little girl and the girls body was found several days later but the time of death was after the traffic stop. The officer never recovered fully from the amount of guilt he had over letting the vehicle go. Just hearing that story has stuck vividly in my mind ever since and there is no telling whether the girl would have survived even if he had pursued but still. When people flee in a seemingly minor situation, you can look at it as “why chase him” or you can look at it as “what is the bigger picture, why is this person fleeing from what he should know is a minor infraction?”

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    • Crazy says

      And there was a famous case in Baltimore where an officer made the idiotic decision to chase someone over some minor issue and ended up killing a pregnant woman walking through a parking lot.

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  13. Deon says

    It is sad they put the public safety at risk like that for some bs. I wad also there they seemed to have wronged the man

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    • BCPD says

      You were there? Cool! How did they wrong him? Dying to know how a criminal can be wronged…

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  14. tr says

    I can understand a certain amount of concern towards the police department’s decision to pursue the runner, but I find it interesting that so many shine their lights mainly on the officers for putting people in danger when the decision would not have to have been made if the man did not run in the first place. The runner obviously did something bad enough for his probation officer to violate him and even if his charges are minor ones the violator needs taught a lesson for being stupid. If they would have let him go and he committed another crime then you would be asking where the police are and why they let him go. We are never satisfied are we?

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  15. Blame to other guy! says

    You people are crazy… I guess the police should let people do as they please. Its easy to be a monday morning quarterback and the dagger is full of them! This person was running for a reason and if the police never chased him then you people would cry that the cops were not doing their job. How about we start holding criminals acountable for their actions…thats right we are too busy funding govt programs to pay for these dirt bags in the first place. And im sure if Obama supported the Bel Air Walmart you dipshits would be all for it…

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  16. Keeping it Real says

    He was wanted for a parole violation, not an actual crime. The parole violation could be something as simple as he didn’t check in with his parole officer. I am not excusing his behavior and he should be locked up. But considering he was driving his own car and heading home, would not it have made more sense for the police in PA to have just handled it themselves. There have been a couple times where I have been almost run off the road by these chases going by my car. Unless an actual crime has just been committed or someone is actually a REAL threat to society at that particular moment, or someone is a real fugitive involving an actual felony, these high speed chases endanger everyone’s life. I heard a cop on WBAL yesterday say that in these situations, “anything goes”. That kind of attitude gets innocent people killed. But it doesn’t matter because these cowboy officers are never personally held accountable for their actions. Just watch the below video for proof of how ridiculous these chases get. It ended in innocent people getting hurt on RT 24. If the link doesn’t work, just go to You Tube and Search I-95 Chase Bel Air.

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    • BCPD says

      Dude, a parole violation is an actual crime. LOL

      Without knowing the original charge, offering your “expert” police opinion is silly.

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      • BUBBA DEN says

        SON OF A BITCH, DAMN THAT. HOW DO I GET IN CONTACT WITH THAT CAT, I NEED TO KNOW IF IT’S SAFE

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  17. RealCop says

    Wow, there are so many great minds on here that know exactly what to do all the time. It is a wonder that it is hard to find good recruits for law enforcement jobs with this talent pool right under our noses. So many of us struggle with the pursue/don’t pursue or shoot/don’t shoot decisions that police officers must make every single day and yet so many on here already have all the answers. The only down side is that all your great insight benefits from the Monday morning factor. I have had bosses like you, knew exactly how something could have best been done after the fact. Truth is they were a joke and so are 99% of the above comments. Live a day in the life, make the decision once (either way) and then your opinion counts.

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    • Fact Checker says

      Amen.

      Keeping it real: I bet if someone stole your keyboard and jumped in a car you would want RealCop to chase them. Once again stop crying about the seatbelt ticket you got when you were 16 and get real. If you can do a better job then sign your name on the line I’m sure the police can use someone with all the answers!

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      • Keeping it Real says

        My keyboard wouldn’t be stolen “fact”. I don’t depend on the police to protect my property. I certainly realize you guys are way too busy making money for the State everyday. Oh and before you start your whining, I have not had a ticket in my entire 45 years of driving nor have I ever committed a crime. I just think the number that should count every month is the number of arrest you make for actual crimes committed against persons and not how many tickets you can write every month. But in this state I have noticed it is all about the money.

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          • HMMMM says

            In these different forums, many officers with integrity have been quite honest about the fact that law enforcment has changed in this area from investigating criminal activity and crime prevention to writing paper. Those that have that integrity have complained that they would feel better about the job if the focus was back on crime prevention. It seems like only the bad cops are on here whining, the good ones are out doing their jobs. it would probably be a good idea if you get off the pc and get back to work.

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    • D says

      LOL @ RealCop! It’s overzealous officers like you that put all our safety at risk. You guys are heroes in your own mind but thanks for entertaining the peons here.
      For the record, I don’t want anyone chasing anyone for a simple probation/parole violation, traffic offense, or some other petty crime. The risk reward for something like that is simply not there. Had this chase lead to a civilian death, would it have been worth it. Nope. Let’s also not forget how much this chase cost everyone. A multitude of police officers, a helicopter, and a hefty tow. Boy I hope they recoverall this money back when this guy is arraigned . Didn’t think so. That’s okay, the 99% of us on here will be happy to pick up the tab. Just add it onto the already outrageous MD tolls or our rising taxes. Your welcome.

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      • BCPD says

        How is he / she overzealous? The statement simply said that unless you are a cop, have been trained as a cop, then keep your opinions about the work to yourself.

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    • Semperfi says

      You cops act like making a decision is so damned difficult. Many of us who served in the armed forces in combat made life decisions every day. Let me make this real simple for you. If you think what you are about to do may get some innocent person killed, you don’t do it. You find another way. If I need to drive a moptor vehicle at speeds over 100 mph on a two lane road to pull over someone for some minor traffic violation when I can get them later at their house, gee, that’s an easy decision. The sad fact is that unlike the military, their are no consequences for your actions. When you do something really stupid that gets some innocent person killed, your department gets sued and we the tax payers pay for your stupidity. I think if you had some personal liability in your actions, you would make smart decisions.

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      • Big Toe says

        I have (and do) served in both. Trust me when I tell you this. A civilian police officer/Trooper is way more scrutinized and second guessed over his/her decisions. The “rules of engagement” are just very different. When we screw up it’s administrative, civil and criminal penalties. But hey, if you think you can do it better, MSP is hiring. P.S. Most of us are ex or current military.

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      • BCPD says

        Funny, this coming from a Marine.

        No, there are consequences. Police can be sued, fired, fined, suspended, arrested.

        The military offers you lawsuit protection, you cannot get suspended, and you need to think before you post. Life isn’t like a recruiting commercial with fancy swords…people have to make decisions on their own, instead of being ordered by superiors to just “blow shit up”.

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  18. AndyRooneysFerociousEyeBrows says

    D, It is simple minded people like yourself that make it so hard to keep risking our lives for the rest of society. If we had a policy not to pursue for probation violators, do you think any of them would stop for us? Clueless people not affiliated with law enforcement say to just go to their house and pick them up, most of these criminals stay with friends,girlfriends, etc and have lied about their address so that there is no telling where they live. If we refused to pursue, the law of averages tells you that eventually we would discontinue pursuit on a vehicle containing a kidnapped child, rape victim, or some other horrible scenario and everyone would be up in arms about it. We are damned if we do and damned if we don’t because we work in a dangerous field and have decided to take on these challenging situations. People like you have the nerve to criticize it while you face tough decisions like which tie to wear that day.

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    • Common Sense says

      Andy, these decisions are pretty simple actually. Lets say that you catch someone on radar doing 47 (probably your favorite number) in a 30 and you try to pull them over and they take off. Lets just assume you now have the vehicle and the driver on your dash cam, you have the tag number. You call it in, nothing outstanding, no issues. So this idiot is now doing 80-100 mph on Rt 40 heading into Aberdeen trying to run away from you. Hey bud, this is pretty simple for me if I am in your position. Just call ahead and get some assistance down the road. I sure as hell am not going to pursue this nut at 100 mph in my own cruiser over some speeding ticket through the town. Most likely, if just drop off and pursue at a safe speed and distance, you’ll catch up with your car or just drive to their home later and you’ll find the car. What you don’t seem to understand is the idea is for the nut to not kill anyone. As long as you are chasing him, the possibility of that happening is huge. Once you stop chasing him and he thinks he has gotten away, he slows down. The public is now safe. It must be the training in MD is flawed. I talk to troopers in other states when I travel and I have watched Alaskan State Troopers on natgeo and these other departments really do handle these situations in a much more sane manner.

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      • says

        So you are assuming that the patrol car has a dash cam, the suspect vehicle passed closed enough, slow enough and in the right direction in daylight to capture the tag and drivers face. Also you obviously don’t understand that it takes about 60 seconds to get vehicle information back from the MVA on a good day. And so in your theory you just call someone down the road. So again you are assuming that he doesn’t turn, or that you have other units in the area up ahead.

        Most agency policies do not allow you to discontinue a pursuit and continue to follow at a safe distance. Plus if he is running, how do you “follow” when he is driving away? That’s just flawed logic.

        But as you said, “the public is now safe.” Unless of course the bad guy just committed a violent crime… People don’t run because they are avoiding a speeding ticket. Pursuits are judged case by case, and not by people who have never been in one. Move to Alaska and then you can argue with them.

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      • BCPD says

        Hahahaha, another TV cop expert!

        Awesome! Cops won’t talk to non-cops about their “rea jobs, for one. Second, they don’t slow down. They keep speeding up, look over their shoulder to see who is chasing them, and do 100mph through your kids school zone…what if he struck one of your kids? Bet your tone would change then.

        Drama queen.

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  19. TruthHurts says

    Because the U.S. Military has never been shown to accidentally hit civilian targets. In case the marines didn’t teach you in your brainwashing, I mean boot camp, thats called sarcasm. You guys don’t accidentally kill innocent people in car accidents, you negligently blow them to bits with missiles. Go back to what you are good at, blindly taking orders and marching first into battle while the people with brains sit back and make up a strategy.

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    • Semperfi says

      @Truth…. Wow…You seriously want to compare being a cop to fighting a war. No wonder the streets aren’t safe for the common man with you clowns in charge.

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      • BCPD says

        Well then sign up, Mr. Fi! The streets would be that much better with a decorated war veteran like you out there! Or wait, were you the one who failed the poly?

        P.S. – Before you get all defensive, I am both. Cop and War Vet…so yes, I have a clue.

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  20. D says

    Actually I’m a MD EMT so I’m a little more qualified than you think and we don’t wear ties. Thanks for the laugh though. Again, my life is more important than you catching a minor probation violator who will eventually be caught or turn himself in(law of averages). Maybe yours is not but please keep that in mind next time you decide to pursue someone.

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  21. tr says

    all this damn negativity……why dont people realize no one has a crystal ball? You dont know what would have happend if they let him go so stop acting like it. 100 things could have transpired if they didn’t pursue, he could have robbed someone, killed someone, helped an old lady across the street, got drunk later that night and hit someone drunk driving, got a job, went to work, ate a hamburger, robbed a bank, etc. etc.

    stop judging people so darn harshly……….

    they made a decison to pursue someone breaking the law who has a record for breaking the law……no one is perfect no one makes the right damn decisions all the time

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  22. Just Sayin.... says

    An EMT how ironic…. How many accidents did we have in Harford County last year because of EMT and Fire Department personnel responding to minor call or accidents where no one was injured? I can’t begin to tell you how many times I have had an Ambulance, Fire Truck or EMT in their personal vehicle with lights fly by me responding to the same call for service. So maybe people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones if you want to talk about the putting the public in harms way. And as far as you be “qualified” please what you mean? Your knowledge of what happened on a scenes come from what the Police tell you! Next time your guys want to go for a ride in the AMBO or Fire Truck so you guys can wash it afterwards just remember your don’t have to turn your lights on for everything. It seems that the only place in the county you guys wouldn’t be in a hurry to get to is the SONIC in Bel Air because they wont give you a discount…. Just Sayin

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  23. Big Dog says

    Makes me wonder how much crime is being committed right now while you cops are busy sitting in your patrol car playing on the internet like this? I would suggest you get to work and stop wasting my money.

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  24. Amazed. says

    I admire the restraint of law enforcement officers. I wouldn’t last a month on the force without shooting one of these stupid bastards. Anyone that runs 130 MPH to avoid being pulled over deserves to eat a bullet. He should have been strangled with his umbilical cord. I would however settle for one month of jail time for every mile per hour over the speed limit as a first offense… second offense would pull an attempted murder charge for every occupant of every car passed in excess of the speed limit during the chase. But alas, all the bleeding heart pansies will protest that this is too harsh – just let him go. Deep down I’m sure he’s a prince that mommy didn’t hug enough.

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  25. Amazing says

    He should definitely be locked up, but after watching the video that is posted above, I do not want my family killed in an accident because the police had no regard for my safety and chased some nut over a minor offense. There are always a lot more alternatives to catching non violent offenders without random wreckless abandonment on the highways. These chases for minor issues NEVEREVER end well. The internet is littered with police dash board cam recordings of absolute mayhem over minor offenses. I salute departments that have a no chase policy for minor infractions. They obviously have leaders and a legal department with a BRAIN! I remember I was on Rt 24 at night back in the fall. I had just left a light, doing only about 45 when a Deputy blew into the next intersection (he had a red light) without even slowing down and almost ran right into us (with a few feet). He had his lights on and no siren, so no one even saw him until he hit the intersection. Now on 24, he just continued on his way. At the next light, also red, he never slowed down, just blew right through it. That’s crazy. And please, no apologist saying what if he was responding to my house.

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