Jackson Police Chief calls Pearl police chase unnecessary - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Jackson Police Chief calls Pearl police chase unnecessary

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Pearl police are now responding to allegations that the police chase that led them into Jackson yesterday was unsafe and unnecessary.

"These things are very touchy," said Lieutenant Brian McGairty with the Pearl Police Department. "They're not fun, they're a Supervisor's nightmare, but at the end of the day, they're for a reason."

Pearl PD tried to pull Jeanell Brownlee over for reckless driving and having a broken windshield, but she fled, leading police on a forty minute long pursuit through the Capital City.

READ MORE: Pearl police identify woman who led authorities on chase

The chase caused at least two accidents - one at Northside Drive and Hanging Moss Road, and another outside UMMC where the chase ended. Several pedestrians outside UMMC also reported almost being hit by Pearl police officers.

"Is it worth putting all of these individual's lives in danger for a traffic violation?" asked Jackson Police Chief Lee Vance. "My own personal feeling about it is, no, absolutely not."

Brownlee also had a misdemeanor warrant out for her arrest in Richland for receiving stolen property. Additionally, she admitted she was high on cocaine during the chase. But police didn't know either of those things when they decided to pursue her.

"The easy thing to do is call it off," said Lieutenant McGairty. "That's the easy thing to do. The hard thing is to figure out, 'Why is this person fleeing?' A lot of times, they don't have that information."

State law does allow for law enforcement agencies to cross over into other jurisdictions while they're in pursuit. But JPD says it wasn't necessary.

"[They] had the tag number!" exclaimed Vance. "Identify them and eventually arrest them... It's not a life or death situation unless you make it that way by conducting these chases."

Pearl police believe the situation was much more urgent.

"If she wasn't pursuing from the police, she could've very well struck someone else, without the police behind her," said Lieutenant McGairty. "You know, could it have been a child?"

Since last year, WLBT and FOX40 have reported on a dozen pursuits initiated by Pearl police into Jackson.

Chief Lee Vance said regardless of Pearl's reasoning, "These police chases coming into Jackson for misdemeanor violations have just simply got to stop."

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