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Chase tragedy

January 20, 2014

Protect and serve the public doesn't mean an officer can violate every vehicle code and chase policy....

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(45)

fromtheport

Jan-20-14 2:03 AM

I agree

8 Agrees | 7 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

sideliner

Jan-20-14 5:24 AM

Agreed. I will be anxious to see how this all plays out. There is no excuse for what happened that evening. The first officer involved had a license plate number to track. High speed chase over what was initially traffic violations is uncalled for.

I am not happy about the direction this police force is headed. From out of control Drug Task Force members, to officers illegally confiscating private citizens' property, to stop and frisk, to dangerous high speed chases, it does not paint a pretty picture for this community.

17 Agrees | 6 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

Capricorn1

Jan-20-14 6:03 AM

I'm an avid supporter of our police and fire department, but I would have to agree with this letter regarding this chase. Such a unnecessary, tragic loss. My question is, will the individual that was arrested be charged for this death since it occurred during the commission of a felony he was committing by eluding police?

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eriklatranyi

Jan-20-14 6:40 AM

If the PennLive report is true, then, Mr. Robinson made a tragic mistake and turned in front of a passing police cruiser with lights on.

This had nothing to do with a high-speed chase. This same type of accident could have happened in any police response.

13 Agrees | 6 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

mikekerstetter

Jan-20-14 6:47 AM

eriklatranyi-"If the PennLive report is true, then, Mr. Robinson made a tragic mistake and turned in front of a passing police cruiser with lights on. This had nothing to do with a high-speed chase. This same type of accident could have happened in any police response."

Exactly Erik. Pull over to the right as far as possible and stop is what a motorist is supposed to do when an emergency vehicle with their lights activated approaches. I said that yesterday; it could have been a shooting, robbery, home invasion, domestic violence, medical emergency or any number of other emergency calls this officer was responding to. This one just happened to be that he was responding to back up other officers involved in the chase. If the Pennlive article is accurate, I don't see it as being the officers fault.

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spike2

Jan-20-14 6:58 AM

Erik - is correct. Second, we have now devolved into a rant against the police. We do not have any reports nor should we within 7 days. I find Sideliners comment re: out-of-control DTA interesting. We seem to demand more police time specifically for drug issues in this area. I assume property is the ongoing Little League pin saga. I think there was a consensus in several posts that this was wrong. We are not lawyers nor the DA and this became a civil matter. Stop and Frisk - another locale? I'm not sure where you see these occurring. I think what makes this community look so bad is the absolute assumption that people are in possession of facts and then choose to extrapolate without a basis in reality. One fact is known, a terrible accident occurred. The rest is mere speculation until official inquiries by an outside investigatory agency are completed.

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Capricorn1

Jan-20-14 7:12 AM

Spike, I'm anxious to see where in the timeframe of this chase did this accident occur and did they continue the chase with the knowledge that this happened? Hopefully the supervisor didn't knowingly direct the chase to continue even after it could have played a role in this tragedy. IMO, it should have been called off immediately if the officer radioed it in. Hopefully the results of the investigation will shed light on this.

2 Agrees | 2 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

Capricorn1

Jan-20-14 7:25 AM

Radioactive, yes I'm sure this officer is traumatized, but we should be more concerned for the victim's family and if it is found that the city and this officer were negligent in ANY way, this family deserves to be justly compensated.

6 Agrees | 2 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

andy33

Jan-20-14 7:30 AM

Just read the PennLive article by John Beauge concerning this crash. Seems like he has access to info that eludes the SG. Wonder why,maybe if the SG wrote the facts accurately and didn't edit everything to death...they would get info too!!!!

9 Agrees | 0 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

leaningright

Jan-20-14 8:39 AM

Can you spell LAWSUIT? It's coming.

6 Agrees | 0 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

SteelerFan

Jan-20-14 9:48 AM

Yoxtheimer: 'This nation wouldn't be half bad if the Constitution wasn't always being ****** all over!'

tell that to Obama you sanctimonious twit!!

I feel really bad for all parties concerned, the innocent victim and his family plus the officer involved who will have to live with this forever.

I don't know about the rest of you, but sometimes it is startling as a driver when all of a sudden sirens and lights appear in your rear view or off to the side and you have to make an instant decision.

Regardless, I would think that the city should bear some responsibility for this tragedy and that the victim's family should have some compensation.

5 Agrees | 3 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

coffee

Jan-20-14 9:49 AM

I for one am willing to wait for the facts before attending the lynching!

15 Agrees | 1 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

underwood

Jan-20-14 10:01 AM

Coffee made the most sensible post on this subject.

9 Agrees | 0 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

eriklatranyi

Jan-20-14 10:01 AM

Yoxtheimer:

It appears you have some mental issues that need to be addressed before you turn into another liberal mass shooter.

9 Agrees | 3 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

enigma

Jan-20-14 10:26 AM

Well Frank, you started off OK, but you then went off the rails at the end. If the bad guys know that all they have to do to get away is drive fast, they will never be caught. What we need to remember is that in this case the officer was not involved in the pursuit, he was trying to catch up to it. That is wrong. This officer is guilty of voluntary manslaughter. He killed a man because he wanted to get in on the 'fun'. More and more, the police see themselves as being above the law. That needs to stop and it needs to stop now. We don't have all of the information yet and we likely never will. If the facts of the case supported the officer's actions, we would have had them on the first day. Since it is taking a lot of time for them to come out, we can be sure that it is a case of trying to make it look good for the officer. I would like to think that I could be proven wrong on this, but it always works that way.

11 Agrees | 4 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

leaningright

Jan-20-14 10:37 AM

Get the license plate number and drop the chase. Go collect the violater later. No life is worth the chase, period. This could have been one of our children or wives or grandparents, fathers.......Stop the chase and collect them later. Their Policy is wrong in my opinion.

6 Agrees | 5 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

JohnZook

Jan-20-14 10:47 AM

My take- This poor soul made a mistake that cost him his life. When you see "emergency" lights coming, you pull over, that's the law. Obviously, unless he had absolutely no time to react, he didn't follow this law. And where ARE the lawyers? The family could sue everybody from the police to the car manufacturer, even the maker of the nuts and bolts, "because these people deserve to be punished". I don't think America should work like the Trial Lawyers Association would like it to work.

9 Agrees | 1 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

leaningright

Jan-20-14 10:56 AM

zook- is it known if the lights and sirens were on?

3 Agrees | 0 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

Scott36

Jan-20-14 11:27 AM

I get sick of you nimrods going on about the cops "rights".-Yoxtheimer

An interesting statement. It has always been my understanding that The Bill of Rights was put into effect to protect the "people" from the government, not visa-versa. Maybe I am mistaken?-Scott

6 Agrees | 0 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

mikekerstetter

Jan-20-14 11:57 AM

leaningright-"zook- is it known if the lights and sirens were on?"

According to the article on Pennlive, they were.

5 Agrees | 0 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

wwhickok

Jan-20-14 12:16 PM

If indeed the police officer did violate procedures and it resulted in the death of a civilian, no matter how you slice it, that's vehicular manslaughter and he deserved to pay the price for that mistake.

Cops think badges make them above the law and give them the right to treat people however they want.

I've met very few police officers that weren't total d-bags. In South Williamsport it seems to be about who you know. In Williamsport, it doesn't matter, they have this philosophy that you're guilty until proven innocent.

It's time to give these cops a reality check. Their #1 priority should be public safety not protecting their brothers in blue from obeying the same laws we "civilians" are required to. The only difference between us and them is a job title.

6 Agrees | 5 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

SteelerFan

Jan-20-14 12:19 PM

Yoxtheimer: 'I mention the Constitution and Obama invariably comes up.'

If the shoe fits.

8 Agrees | 1 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

wwhickok

Jan-20-14 12:21 PM

Having said all of that (in my previous statement) I don't believe that the way a cop conducts themselves is necessarily a reflection on who they are as people.. I believe that some of these cops let the 'power' go to their head.

I am all for waiting for all of the facts before deeming this police officer guilty of anything.

The culture surrounding the way the police officers conduct themselves however, I feel needs some serious improvement.

In the meantime my thoughts and prayers go out to both the family of the deceased civilian and the police officer and his family. Both families I'm sure are going through a very difficult time, in completely different ways but never the less difficult.

4 Agrees | 0 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

BillTriumph

Jan-20-14 1:54 PM

"I would like to think that I could be proven wrong on this, but it always works that way" - enigma

Your warped sense of justice intrigues me enigma. You make your arbitrary case for manslaughter charges by invoking the "prove a negative" methodology ...the cop is guilty until someone proves (to you) he's not.

3 Agrees | 3 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

JohnMBower

Jan-20-14 3:04 PM

As of now, only the State Police pursuit policy has been released, but this was not private to begin with.

When we have the Williamsport Police pursuit policy, we will be better informed as to what rules may have been in play when this tragedy occurred.

For example, there may be a limit on how many units can respond at speed, without a supervisor's say-so. If that is the case, and the officer broke the policy, he is to blame for at least part of it.

If his commander ordered him to respond at speed, much of the blame would shift to him or her, away from the officer.

Releasing the policy isn't just about letting the taxpayers know what the rules are, it's about giving a fair chance for Boomer's family to seek justice.

As citizens, we may decide to demand changes to the pursuit policy, as well, to put an end to high speed chases through residential areas with too many police cars.

As it is now, we don't know and can't make informed decisions.

(Continued… )

3 Agrees | 1 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

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