Police officer won’t be charged for triple fatal crash during chase

The police officer who chased a suspect driving a car on the N50 near Kampen will not be blamed for the fact that the suspect wound up in a lane driving against the direction of traffic during that pursuit, and collided head-on with another vehicle. Three people were killed in the accident on November 2, 2022. The police officer is not being prosecuted.

The Public Prosecution Service (OM) announced the outcome of the investigation by the Rijksrecherche, the department that handles internal investigations at the police and other government services.

The innocent victims killed in the crash were identified as a 67-year-old woman and a 68-year-old man from Emmeloord. The suspect who was being chased was a 41-year-old from the Groningen municipality of Het Hogeland. He was killed in the crash with the Emmeloord couple’s car.

The suspect was being pursued after a report of serious assault in Bedum, Groningen. He allegedly attacked his ex-wife with a hammer and then drove off to an unknown destination. The police officer came up behind the man’s car and gave him a signal to stop, but the suspect ignored them. A chase ensued, with the police officer having activated their flashing lights and siren. A police helicopter filmed the chase from above.

The man overtook several cars until a fire may have started either in his car or on his car. This happened just before 9 p.m. He then collided head-on with the oncoming vehicle in the opposite lane.

The Rijksrecherche concluded that the police officer complied with the guidelines about how to conduct a pursuit, and the pursuit was a proportionate response given the circumstances. “The officer remained at an appropriate distance and kept in touch with the dispatch room throughout the pursuit. The conclusion of the OM is therefore that the officer cannot be blamed, and that he has not endangered road safety,” said the OM.

Reporting by ANP

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