ST. LOUIS – Several months after requesting action over police pursuit policies in the St. Louis area, the NAACP reports some progress in talks around the topic.
Local NAACP chapters are working with the Department of Justice to come up with risk reduction solutions related to police pursuits in St. Louis City and St. Louis County.
This comes after seven people died from crashes in the St. Louis region last spring. In those crashes, drivers tried to get away from officers. One of those crashes happened over Mother’s Day weekend, resulting in five deaths.
“If you’re going to chase somebody and you’re in an urban area, densely populated, things change and are different,” said St. Louis City NAACP president Adolphus Pruitt in July. “And the ability for you to harm somebody or harm yourself as an officer will be more likely than some of those other instances.”
“We have to find a better way, a better alternative because too many lives have been taken away,” said Aaron Piggee in May after he lost five family members in the Mother’s Day weekend crash.
Throughout the summer, the NAACP and DOJ have met with the St. Louis City and County police Departments for a series of discussions as part of a mediation process. In a statement shared to FOX 2 on Tuesday, the NAACP says the meetings have been substantial and “there are agreements on a number of fronts.”
Among some topics to address, the NAACP wants clarification as to how police pursuits are supervised and when officers decide to use spike strips. The NAACP hopes to conclude the mediation process by the end of September.