Government needs to back Police with new powers

The Government needs to back Police with new tools and technology to apprehend fleeing drivers in light of new policy that hampers their ability to give chase, National’s Police spokesperson Simeon Brown says.

It has been reported that Police will no longer pursue vehicles that don’t stop on request, unless there is an immediate risk to life or grievous bodily harm. This could mean more drunk drivers, car thieves and other criminals get off the hook by simply speeding away.

“While it is important to acknowledge the risk that police pursuits pose, this new policy will embolden criminals who now know that officers can’t give chase,” Mr Brown says.

“Our frontline Police need all the tools to do their job. Criminals shouldn’t have the luxury of knowing that putting their foot to the floor is essentially a Get Out of Jail Free Card.

“If this is to be the new normal then Police Minister Poto Williams needs to back Police with a corresponding increase in tools and technology.

“The Government should be looking seriously at increasing the penalties for fleeing an officer, to make them a real deterrent, and funding Police to invest in new apprehension tools.

“Labour’s soft-on-crime attitude has meant more violent criminals are out on our streets and in our communities. National will back our Police with the proper tools to do their job.”