“Police in South Carolina Town Not Allowed to Chase Suspects”

by Walter Olson on September 26, 2009

Not even on foot, announced Wellford, S.C. mayor Sallie Peake: “As of this date, there are to be no more foot chases when a suspect runs. I do not want anyone chasing after any suspects whatsoever.” She was tired of all the insurance premiums and workers’ comp claims: “The officers are costing us more money on insurance than most citizens here in the city of Wellford are even earning.“ [Lowering the Bar, WSPA] She’s now revoked the policy. [AP/Charleston Post and Courier] Commentary: Officer.com.


1 Greg Dwyer 09.26.09 at 10:43 am

I read this about a week back. Does this mayor not realize that injuries are a part of police work. The increase in the crime rate in the city will more than cover the savings in insurance premiums. When criminals realize that all they have to do is run a little, there will be much less capturing of criminals.

2 Doug 09.26.09 at 11:59 am

Police injuries from chasing suspects are just a cost of doing business.

3 Invid 09.26.09 at 1:57 pm

You assume that crime will increase. Plus cops aren’t legally obliged to stop criminals so make chasing them voluntary. Cuts down on comp claims but they can’t hide behind a rule stopping them from chasing.

4 Todd Rogers 09.26.09 at 8:37 pm

Invid – the rules may not work the same way on your planet. You’re welcome to test out your theories, though.

5 Invid 09.26.09 at 10:08 pm

Actually, I’m not welcome to test that theory since we’re all subject to many thousands of laws and regulations.
I am curious about what I proposed that is from another planet. If it is a lack of police worship, that’s easily explained: http://www.theagitator.com/category/police-professionalism/

6 Masonian 09.27.09 at 4:35 am

Nothing says “Commit Crimes Here” than a NO-CHASE policy.
Regardless of whether officers disregard such a policy, the crooks that hear this information (first-hand, second-hand, urban-legend-hand) will always think they have a home in Wellford S.C.
I wonder what the tipping point between law enforcement and liability will be? Is it only a matter of time before litigous red tape makes some nut dress up like a bat and go around knocking “baddies” on the head?
Wait a minute…

7 Kenster 09.28.09 at 9:25 am

This reminds me of the saying: A boat is safe in the harbor, but that’s not what boats are for.

8 Stella Baskomb 10.05.09 at 12:12 am

“She’s now revoked the policy. ”

So is this still news?

I did hear that the council objected when the mayor ordered firemen not to hurry when answering future alarms. Oh, and do not enter burning buildings, either – too much comp liability. Someone also told me she ordered city electricians not to touch electric wires, and sanitation workers not to lift any trash cans. I wonder if she’s revoked those policies, too.

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