O’Fallon, Mo. authorities take new approach to police pursuits

Missouri

O’FALLON, Mo. – In the past couple of weeks, the O’Fallon Police Department has had five police pursuits, and the chief said you can expect more.

Around 4:00 a.m. Wednesday, O’Fallon officers tried to pull over a vehicle and the driver took off. O’Fallon officers chased the suspect’s vehicle to Florissant where there was a foot pursuit and the suspect was taken into custody.

O’Fallon Police Chief Philip Dupuis said people should come to expect this from the O’Fallon police department. Dupuis took the chief’s position about eight months ago and with him came changes.

“After talking to the officers, they wanted to be proactive, they want to be able to catch bad guys, they want to put bad guys in jail, they want to protect the citizens of O’Fallon,” Dupuis said.

In the past four days, O’Fallon has had three police pursuits: one on Sunday and two on Wednesday. All involved stolen vehicles.

Dupuis said they recently completed the installation of license plate readers throughout the city. Those readers were used in one of the pursuits Wednesday and the one Sunday.

With these pursuits, O’Fallon police have recovered several stolen guns and individuals with outstanding warrants.

Yet, with any good pursuit, Dupuis said there also comes the knowledge of knowing when to back off.

“We are going to go after the bad guys but we are protecting the public,” he said. “Sometimes they are going to score a point but we are going to win the game.”

So even though Dupuis has only been here a couple of months, he hopes his message to criminals is loud and clear.

“Our message here in St. Charles County is you might want to think twice before coming across the river because all of the agencies in St. Charles County are going to be doing everything they can to catch you and put you in jail,” he said.

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