Chicago cops barred from chasing people on foot who run away

The Chicago Police Department has unveiled a new policy prohibiting its officers from chasing people on foot simply because they run away, or because they have committed minor offenses.

The policy, which was introduced Tuesday, also encourages cops to “consider alternatives” to pursuing someone who “is visibly armed with a firearm.”

Under the policy, officers may give chase if they believe a person is committing or is about to commit a felony, a Class A misdemeanor such as domestic battery, or a serious traffic offense that could risk injuring others, such as drunken driving or street racing.

Perhaps most significantly, the new policy makes clear that the days of officers giving chase just because someone tries to get away from them are over.

“People may avoid contact with a member for many reasons other than involvement in criminal activity,” the policy states.

The long-awaited foot chase ban is expected to go into effect by the end of the summer, after the city’s 11,900 uniformed cops receive training.

The policy prohibits officers from chasing people on foot simply because they run away.
Civilian Office of Police Accountability/AFP via Getty Images
The policy also encourages cops to “consider alternatives” to pursuing someone who “is visibly armed with a firearm.”
Scott Olson/Getty Images

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