Folks, today tragedy struck when a 14 year old boy went joyriding along with two passengers aged 11 and 6. According to a Fox News Report, the event happened in Fontana, California as follows:
A CHP officer pulled over the Nissan Maxima
for running a red light on a Fontana street just before 9 p.m.
Wednesday, but the driver sped off as the officer walked toward the
car, the statement said.
In a chase that
lasted less than a minute, the driver ran several red lights and
reached 90 mph on city streets before losing control and hitting the
wall, the statement said.
All 3 boys were killed. The question becomes whether or not the police were in hot pursuit and were justified in the chase that ultimately cost the lives of 3 young boys.
If it turns out that the chase was not justified, then the families of the boys will have a wrongful death claim against the Fontana Police Department for their tragic loss.
The answer(s) to this question will be determined by the internal police investigation, a court of law or both.
When have the police gone too far and did they go too far this time? Only time and a thorough investigation will tell. Meanwhile, the families of the children have a limited time within which to pursue a claim against the governmental entity that may be partially responsible for the tragic loss of their children. Could the police be trained to react differently in a situation such as this? Did they have probable cause to believe that the driver and his 6 and 11 year old occupants were a danger on the streets? Or was the 14 year old driver just a scared child that would have reacted differently if he were not being chased? What is the Fontana Police Department's protocol in this type of situation and did they follow it?
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