Tuesday, December 07, 2010


In the wake of the police's weekend contribution to the annual roadtoll, the Independent Police Conduct Authority have renewed their call for a change in police pursuit policy so that it is based on public safety rather than general suspicion and injured pride. Meanwhile, the government is talking about tougher penalties, in the erroneous belief that this will deter people from fleeing police. I doubt it. In order to deter, drivers would have to think - but as the IPCA has already found, the typical driver who flees police is a stupid scared teenager, who does it precisely because they aren't thinking. In these circumstances, tougher penalties are just a futile exercise in dick-waving. As for Greg O'Connor's call for car crushings and $10,000 fines, I'd really prefer he worked out his sexual problems in private, rather than splashing them across the media for all to see.

These police killings will not be reduced by imposing tougher penalties on victims. They will only be reduced by the police changing their pursuit policy. But that is clearly the last thing on their mind. And so kids will continue to die, victims of unsafe pursuits driven by the police's kneejerk authoritarianism.