Einstein : Not everything that can be counted counts. And not everything that counts can be counted.

Sunday, 12 August 2007

The perils of pursuit

An interesting story from the BBC news website.

A police officer has been found not guilty of setting his dog on a suspect after a high-speed car chase.

Pc Deano Walker, of West Midlands Police, denied charges of assault, dangerous driving and perverting the course of justice.

A jury at Stafford Crown Court cleared him of setting his dog on the man and perverting the course of justice.

They found him guilty of a charge of careless driving, but cleared him of dangerous driving.

During the three-day trial, the prosecution claimed the alleged incidents took place while police were chasing a suspect in a stolen van.

The prosecution said that at one point the footage, from two patrol cars and a helicopter, showed Pc Walker's car colliding with the van, which they had mistakenly believed was stolen.

Helicopter footage then showed him knocking down the van's passenger, Martin Pearce, and setting his dog on him, the court was told.

But during the trial Pc Walker said he did not believe either he or his dog had been particularly aggressive towards Mr Pearce.

Pc Walker, who was suspended from the police force for 14 months, was given nine points on his driving licence and fined £500.

Outside court, Pc Walker said: "Now I want to get back to work and do the job I'm paid to do as a police officer."

Pc Walker will still face disciplinary action from West Midlands Police after he admitted breaking force rules as he was not authorised to take part in pursuits.


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