High-speed chases have pervaded the news lately as California Highway Patrol is seemingly always on the hunt for runaway motorists and those evading arrest. Over the past couple weeks, we have reported a number of high-speed chases- one claiming the life of a homeless man, another spanning three hours and hundreds of miles.
We urge all motorists to avoid this course of conduct regardless of any outstanding warrants or legal issues that may arise resulting from a police traffic stop. Any person choosing to embark on a high-speed chase is in for more than a simple joy ride. Offenders could face felony counts of evading police, reckless endangerment, various moving violations and will be responsible for any injuries to pedestrians or police in the ensuing chase. As we reported last month, a high-speed chase resulted in the death of a homeless man who was positioned on the street in the line of the chase. The driver who initiated the chase will answer to vehicular homicide charges as the chase resulted in the loss of life.
In another high-speed incident, nearly two-dozen rounds of gunfire were propelled at one man as he attempted to escape after being stopped following a chase perpetuated by the driver of the vehicle. While no officers were injured and the gunshot victim was not seriously injured, the need for drawn firearms and 100-mile per hour pursuits is patently unnecessary when compared to the citation or moving violation the officers would have issued had the driver not taken off.
The Banning Police Department began to pursue the vehicle around 6:30pm on Tuesday evening after observing the vehicle weaving erratically in the lane. When police tried to stop the vehicle, it immediately sped away. Reports are circulating that the vehicle was actually stolen.
Within minutes, the Banning Police Department turned the matter over to California Highway Patrol who eagerly followed pursuit of the speeding car topping 100 mph at some points.
The pursuit finally ended under and underpass at which point one passenger attempted to flee the vehicle on foot while brandishing a handgun. Four officers saw the individual brandish the weapon and all four fired at the individual.