Meeks: Pursuits outside of norm

Published 12:03 am Thursday, October 7, 2010

Sheriff Dennis Meeks said this week’s two pursuits are “outside of the norm” for his department.

Tuesday, a Florida man was injured after he allegedly attempted to flee from a safety checkpoint, and on Saturday, a sheriff’s deputy was injured during a high-speed pursuit with a Florala man.

“We may go a year and not have one, and then, like this week, have two,” Meeks said. “You can’t predict them. As a general rule, we don’t have many.”

Meeks said deputies are trained on how to handle the situations, when to initiate a pursuit and when to terminate one.

“Safety is the major governor of a pursuit,” he said. “Deputies are not going to start a pursuit unless the person has committed a crime. As far as ending a pursuit (once initiated), that’s determined by the safety of all involved. For example, if the chase gets into a populated area, it may be aborted at that time. If the deputy loses sight of the vehicle, it may be aborted at that time. It’s always about the safety of the general public and our deputies.”