High-speed police pursuits occasionally end in traffic accidents involving one or multiple vehicles. Some studies estimate that pursuits result in accidents 30 percent of the time, and of those accidents, more than half lead to serious injuries to the drivers involved in the pursuit.
The liability of police departments in pursuit-related accidents is not straightforward. Because the police officer involved in the pursuit is an employee of the department, the department, and in reality, the state that oversees the department, is liable in a pursuit-related accident lawsuit.
In many cases, as long as the officer follows protocol and uses reasonable force, the state has been non-guilty in pursuit-related accidents. For instance, the Supreme Court recently heard a case in which the officer chased after a speeding motorist.
The ensuing pursuit resulted in the police officer ramming the back of the motorist's car and causing an injury that made the motorist a quadriplegic. The Supreme Court ruled in the officer's favor.
If you or anyone you know has been injured in a pursuit-related accident, contact the Iowa personal injury lawyers of LaMarca Law Group, P.C. at (515) 705-0233.