Residents react to changes made to regional pursuit policy

By Tara Morgan - bio | email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Richmond residents hope they'll be asked to make suggestions when area police chiefs come together to revise the regional police pursuit policy.

A summit is being planned to talk about that pursuit policy which was created in 2003 and how it needs to be updated. According to Richmond city leaders, several changes have already been made, but some residents believe it's a case of too little too late.

Patricia Jackson heard the crash that reverberated across city and county lines.

"It was awful. The brick house shook a little bit," said Jackson.

Pastor Anthony Taylor was killed nearly three weeks ago at 31st and P Streets in Church Hill. The end result of a police chase that began in Henrico. 

Richmond city leaders say several changes have been made to the 2003 Regional Pursuit Policy. One requires police to alert neighboring jurisdictions of a checkpoint within a mile of a city or county border.

Missy Murchie hopes police will get feedback from residents.

"My concern just with coming into the neighborhoods is you have families, especially children out and about, and when a police chase comes through usually they're going at a high rate of speed. Because the families have no warning they don't know if their children might be in danger," said Murchie.

Some residents question why it's taken seven years and a tragedy for this policy to get another look.

"Unfortunately it seems like we're not being proactive because we had to wait until a deadly incident happened in order to make change, but at least the fact that the mayor and some of the other big power houses are now talking about creating change," said Chris Whiting.

Richmond's police chief says he's talked to Chesterfield and Henrico police ahead of a planned summit and reached out to other chiefs.

"I'm glad something is being done about it, so soon," said Jackson.

Richmond city leaders say area chiefs also plan to meet once a  year to review the regional pursuit policy. A date has not yet been set for the summit.

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