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Syracuse Man Gets 7 Years Months Later For Speeding That "Caused Trooper's Death"

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posted on Feb, 15 2007 @ 02:04 PM
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Dunno how many of you have heard of this story, but it's been going on for months now. Some friends of mine in Syracuse were filling me in on this. Months ago, a motorcyclist was going well over 100 mph and passed a trooper in a Chevy Tahoe going the opposite direction. The Tahoe turned around and began chase, and eventually crashed when taking a turn far too fast, and the trooper died. A large search for the motorcyclist began, and 3 months later, they somehow found him. In court yesterday, the motorcyclist was sentenced to 7 years in prison for "aggravated second-degree manslaughter" of the trooper who chased him in a large SUV.

Shortly after the incident that occured last April, a bill was proposed to make it a felony when outrunning police link
and some have even proposed the death penalty if an officer dies.

Personally I think this is a bit much. Come on, chasing a motorcycle in a Chevy Tahoe on winding roads? Personally I think that's a bad idea to do in an SUV, but then again, the motorcyclist was probably driving recklessly.

What do you guys think about this?

mod edit: fixed links

[edit on 2/16/2007 by Gools]




posted on Feb, 15 2007 @ 02:11 PM
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This is stupid if you ask me. The only laws this man broke were speeding and reckless driving. If he knew the officer was following him then he can be charged with that. The officer was responsible for his own driving.



posted on Feb, 15 2007 @ 02:13 PM
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I agree with it. It's a cause and effect issue. The trooper would have had no reason to chase the motorcyclist at high speeds if he hadn't have been breaking the law in the first place. Therefore, the motorcyclist speeding and fleeing the police directly caused the officer's death.



posted on Feb, 15 2007 @ 02:36 PM
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I disagree with the outcome on this.
Here is my reasoning. In most cities and states, there are rules and regulations that govern high speed chases. If and when a high speed chase starts to become dangerous to, the one being chased, the chasing officers, or innocent civilians, the chase is normally called off and if there is a helicopter available, it is called in to continue the chase.
If no helicopter is available, the speeder basicaly get a get out of jail free card (normally, they do something stupid and get caught a day or 2 later).

Add to this the fact that the pursuing officer is in a Chevy Tahoe which cannot handle high speed turns due to it as well as most SUV's have a high turn over rate. The crash and subsequent death of the officer is his own fault. I am sorry to say.

Most likely, this decision will be overturned in the appeals court.



posted on Feb, 15 2007 @ 03:42 PM
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Originally posted by BlueTriangle
I agree with it. It's a cause and effect issue. The trooper would have had no reason to chase the motorcyclist at high speeds if he hadn't have been breaking the law in the first place. Therefore, the motorcyclist speeding and fleeing the police directly caused the officer's death.
So if you're jaywalking and a policeman gets run over trying to give you a ticket. you'd be quite happy to be banged up in prison for manslaughter because you cause it?

How about if you are taking a whizz in an alley and a police car crashes getting there, you'd have directly caused that too.

The troopers lack of car control caused his death, not anything else.



posted on Feb, 15 2007 @ 04:39 PM
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Originally posted by Flyer
So if you're jaywalking and a policeman gets run over trying to give you a ticket. you'd be quite happy to be banged up in prison for manslaughter because you cause it?

How about if you are taking a whizz in an alley and a police car crashes getting there, you'd have directly caused that too.

The troopers lack of car control caused his death, not anything else.

I think driving over 100mph is just a tiny bit more dangerous than jaywalking or taking a wiz.


I feel this is long over due. These guys that try and outrun the cops are not only putting themselves in danger, but the police and the general public as well! Not to mention the thousands of dollars in tax money it cost to replace the vehicles when the get damaged.

It damn well should be a felony and if someone dies because of it they should get the death penalty.

There's no reason to be driving over 100mph. And if you decide to break the law f'n pull over and take it like a man. Don't be chicken #e and try and outrun the cops.



posted on Feb, 15 2007 @ 06:15 PM
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um well if the motorcycle was coming at him at 100mph + and he turned his tahoe around and started chasing. Would the motorcycle even see him? I mean its winding roads and he was going so fast and we all know how slow most SUVs are. I think he should get his recklass driving and speeding tickets but not jail time.



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 07:06 AM
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Originally posted by mecheng
I think driving over 100mph is just a tiny bit more dangerous than jaywalking or taking a wiz.

Were not talking about how dangerous the acts themselves are, we are talking about the policemans inability to get to the crime safely and that's no one else's fault than his own.



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 07:58 AM
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Originally posted by Flyer

Originally posted by mecheng
I think driving over 100mph is just a tiny bit more dangerous than jaywalking or taking a wiz.

Were not talking about how dangerous the acts themselves are, we are talking about the policemans inability to get to the crime safely and that's no one else's fault than his own.


I understand what the issue is. You're the one trying to make the connection between taking a wiz and jaywalking and driving over 100mph.

The fact is that the guy broke the law by driving over 100mph. The cop is doing his job in trying to pull him over. Being the chicken # he is, the guy continued to try to outrun the police. It was this act which caused the policeman to crash and eventually die. You want to give the criminal a free ride just because he happens to have a motorcycle that can outrun a SUV... something I'm sure the motorcyclist was well aware of and took advantage of. Rediculous!

I'm sick of people blaming the police for injuries, deaths, etc. during high speed chases. Its not their fault... its the fault of the f'n criminal trying to outrun the cops! Place the blame where blame is due... not on the guy trying to stop the criminal. Fact is that if people wouldn't break the law we wouldn't have these problems. We need make the decision to outrun cops much harder by making the penalties much, much stiffer.

The motorcyclist should fry.



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 11:20 AM
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You still havent answered the question, speeding is a minor offence. Often the only thing a person will get is a fine.

Should jay walkers, people taking a whizz in the street, people involved in domestic disputes, people playing their stereo too loud (or any number of things police have to respond to) be charged for manslaughter if the police are not driving responsibly or within their limits to get to the scene?



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 12:03 PM
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Originally posted by Flyer
You still havent answered the question, speeding is a minor offence. Often the only thing a person will get is a fine.

Should jay walkers, people taking a whizz in the street, people involved in domestic disputes, people playing their stereo too loud (or any number of things police have to respond to) be charged for manslaughter if the police are not driving responsibly or within their limits to get to the scene?


I'll answer your analogy... no.

But I think it's you who is missing the point. The cop didn't die going to the scene. He was already at the scene when the motorcycle passed him. If the motorcycle would have just pulled over when the cop put on his lights, it would have been over and nobody would have been hurt, right?

The point is that the motorcyclist decided "I've go a bike, he's got an SUV, and we're on winding roads... I can outrun him". It is what happened after the scene and the decision of the motorcyclist that caused the policeman to die. The cop was just doing his job which was to issue the speeding ticket and stop the motorcyclist from possibly hurting himself or an innocent bystander. And therefore, the motorcyclist should be punished justly.

It's like you're rewarding the motorcyclist for the fact that he's got a bike and the cop doesn't. The guy made a deliberate decision to try and outrun the cop which ultimately caused the cop to die. In this country you are held responsible for your decisions.



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 12:12 PM
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You're mixing apples and oranges here. All of the instances that you mentioned do not involve a person fleeing from the police and causing a high speed chase.

I also find it kind of hard to believe that the person on the bike didn't know he was being chases, should he try to claim that. I have personally had a vehicle significantly over 100mph on a few occasions and that is nowhere near fast enough to lose your surroundings into a blur. I can name dozens of times that I have blown by a police car at around 80mph and I saw them right away. Luckily, seven times the officer ignored me and I only ended up with one ticket. Surely, if a parked police car (even if it was hidden behind something) saw a bike go by at 100 mph, the lights and sirens were on within a second. He knew he was being chased and risked his own life, those near him during the chase, and the cops life. That's recklessness...and manslaughter.



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 12:24 PM
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Originally posted by mecheng
In this country you are held responsible for your decisions.


Exactly.

It was the officers decision to pursue the motorcycle in an SUV. The officer may have been trying to do his job, but the reality is if he was driving that way in an SUV, he was just as much endangering himself, and the other drivers on the road as the motorcyclist.

What happened to him is a direct result of the decision he made to continue pursuing a speeding motorcycle on windy roads in an SUV. It's not fair in the least, and the motorcyclist should be charged with no less than running from the cops... and at absolute most, involuntary man-slaughter.........



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 12:34 PM
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Originally posted by YoBrandonRaps
and at absolute most, involuntary man-slaughter.........

I'd agree with that. But it has to be more than something like reckless driving.
However, I still don't quite agree with the fact that it was the cops decision that caused him to die. I mean sure that a logical statement, but it didn't have to happen if the guy would have just pulled over. The cop has to try and stop the guy or someone else might get killed. We can't just let these guys go. They have to suffer a much harsher penalty than just reckless driving or it will happen over and over and then innocent people will lose their lives.



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 12:58 PM
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Mecheng - If I call the police and say there's a thief with a gun in my house, and speeding to my house a police officer crashes and dies, who should be held responsible fro his death? Me for calling the police, the thief for prompting my call to the police, or the police officer for wreckless driving?

Lets make it a little more interesting, Let's say the policeman dies because while he's speeding to my house, he rounds a curve and sees a hay wagon (without a slow moving vehicle placard dispalyed as required by law )directly in front of him, and a truck coming the other way, and he crashes int a tree. Now who's to blame and to what degree are they criminaly responsible? Is the farmer with the hay wagon now responsible?

Let's add in that the road is narrow and curvy and he's driving a suburban.

In the Syracuse case there were no obstacles in the road. The officer was driving too fast and acted improperly based on the threat and level of danger to others. His actions more than doubled the likelihood of a catastrophe. And, unfortunatley a catastrophe occured.

This is a travesty of justice in my opinion.



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 01:08 PM
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Originally posted by darkbluesky
Mecheng - If I call the police and say there's a thief with a gun in my house, and speeding to my house a police officer crashes and dies, who should be held responsible fro his death? Me for calling the police, the thief for prompting my call to the police, or the police officer for wreckless driving?


Police officer.


Lets make it a little more interesting, Let's say the policeman dies because while he's speeding to my house, he rounds a curve and sees a hay wagon (without a slow moving vehicle placard dispalyed as required by law )directly in front of him, and a truck coming the other way, and he crashes int a tree. Now who's to blame and to what degree are they criminaly responsible? Is the farmer with the hay wagon now responsible?


Police officer.


Let's add in that the road is narrow and curvy and he's driving a suburban.

In the Syracuse case there were no obstacles in the road. The officer was driving too fast and acted improperly based on the threat and level of danger to others. His actions more than doubled the likelihood of a catastrophe. And, unfortunatley a catastrophe occured.


First, I find it funny you blame the officer for driving too fast and acting improperly. Somehow he's the one who doubled the likelyhood of a catastrophe? Unbelievable. What happened to the motorcyclist in this equasion?

Second, I answered these questions before and your analogies don't correspond with what happened. This didn't happen on the way to the scene of a crime. They happend after the policeman hit his lights to pull the motorcyclist over. The motorcyclist then decided he had the advantage and made the decision to continue on recklessly which eventually killed the officer.


This is a travesty of justice in my opinion.


It's easy... place the blame where blame is due. Don't lay blame on the officier who is out to protect you and me! Lay blame on the idiot on the motorcyle. Luckily he didn't kill some two year old kid crossing the f'n street!

[edit on 16-2-2007 by mecheng]



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 01:29 PM
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Originally posted by mecheng

First, I find it funny you blame the officer for driving too fast and acting improperly. Somehow he's the one who doubled the likelyhood of a catastrophe? Unbelievable. What happened to the motorcyclist in this equasion?


If both participants had been driving the same vehicles I'd say each operator had the same potential to cause an accident. If the likelihood of an accident occuring w/ one motorcyle driving @ 100 mph was 1000:1 (just arbitray odds for arguments sake) then the likelihood of an accident occuring with two similar motorcycles travelling at 100 mph would be 500:1 agreed? Now put one of the operators in a vehicle with a mass approximately 10 times greater the other, and a center of gravity approximately 3 times higher than the other and in my mind that vehicle and driver assumes a significantly larger portion of the statistical odds of causing an accident. At least more than half.



It's easy... place the blame where blame is due. Don't lay blame on the officier who is out to protect you and me! Lay blame on the idiot on the motorcyle. Luckily he didn't kill some two year old kid crossing the f'n street!

[edit on 16-2-2007 by mecheng]


What if the cop killed a kid? Who'd be responsible for the kids death? Using your line of reasoning I guess we'd have to blame the motorcylcist.

The cop was wrong, he added significantly to the dangerousness of the situation, without any real possiblity of reducing the initial level of danger as soon as he realized the cyclist would not yield.

Radio travels at light speed, he had no cause to follow in the manner he did.

The cyclist is guilty of probation violation, speeding, wreckless driving and failure to comply with a police officers orders (possibly) he is not guilty of homicide IMO.

[edit on 2/16/2007 by darkbluesky]

Just had to add this in reply to your "place the blame where due" statement.

The responsibility for the officers death lies with the officer.

He decided to follow a motorcycle he knew he had no chance to catch

He decided to continue at high speed in a vehicle not suited to the driving conditions

He lost control of his vehicle.

His death, while unfortunate, was a result of his poor decision making process, and his poor driving skill.



[edit on 2/16/2007 by darkbluesky]



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 01:40 PM
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Originally posted by darkbluesky
What if the cop killed a kid? Who'd be responsible for the kids death? Using your line of reasoning I guess we'd have to blame the motorcylcist.


True. I would blame the motorcyclist. I know you'll disagree but IMO the motorcycist initially broke the law by driving over 100mph which caused the cop to follow him in an effort to issue the citation and stop the motorcyclist. The motorcyclist then chose further break the law by trying to outrun the cop which then resulted in the cop's death. The motorcyclist's decisions resulted in the death of the cop. The cop was just doing his job.

Unfortunately we're just arguing in circles now. But I'm going to side with the law. You can choose to side with the criminal if you want.



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 01:49 PM
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Originally posted by mecheng
You can choose to side with the criminal if you want.


Very clever.

I'm siding with the fellow citizen who's been treated unfairly by NY's bull### political machine, just as an example to others. They wrote a new law especially for this case. Bullfeces. A law written and sponsored by a state assemblyman from this district, in an attempt to garner votes during an election year. And incase you're wondering, he won.



posted on Feb, 16 2007 @ 01:52 PM
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Ok, I have more...

One thing I'm sick of are the "wildest police chases" on TV these days. Not so much the shows themselves but the idiots who cause unbelievable damage at tax payer expense and threaten the lives of innocent people as well as the officers who are trying to apprehend them.

Many videos show the perps flying through busy city streets slamming into cars on those streets, causing much injury, death and destruction.

What I'm sick of is people laying blame with the cops and not the criminals.

What then do you suppose the cops do?

Let me propose a hypothetical now...

Suppose someone knocks off a bank and kills a couple people in the process. They then take off trying to escape. By your line of reasoning, we dare not chase them down because the cops might hurt someone. How do you suggest we stop them?



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