Toe Save wrote:
I have an old friend and classmate who is on the force down under. I linked him to this thread. Here is his response:
I've looked at the post and as much as the source material as I can find. I'll have to post thru you (very strict rules re: identifying myself as a cop on line) Something did happen but given occ health and safety rules in aus there is not a snow balls chance in hell members of the public would be ordered to form a road block. People may have perceived it that way, but at best they would have been directed to stop due to the dangerous driving of the fleeing vehicle. Members of the public cannot be directed by Police to put their lives or property at risk. This would not be ethical or lawful under any circumstances. Being "in the know" at some very high risk very intense and dangerous situations, at a very basic tenant is that we would sooner a bad guy get away than any member of the public be put at risk. Each state has varying pursuit policies but in South Australia, there is what amounts to no pursuit unless to terminate would put someones life at risk...but the more dangerous a person's driving is the less likely there is to be any kind of extended pursuit. Something happened in Victoria but how that is being reported is incorrect or willfully misleading. Every single major incident I have been involved in which has been reported in the media (including a triple murder and the shooting of a police officer) has included several factual errors...often the media pieces together a story from members of the public who saw some bits of what happened, heard about other bits from others or/and are lead in certain directions by creative reporters. They have never gotten the whole story correct...ever. All that being said, police are normal people with some training and are granted some extraordinary authorities and sometimes they can screw up...if this is the case I expect there will be sackings and criminal charges; I'm 100 % certain that an action such as this would never be authorized by anyone. While Police are often looked at as being aggressive, power hungry wanna be tough guys(there are some of those around, don't get me wrong) most are people who want to provide a service to the community and do the things or intervene where most wouldn't. The pressure and scrutiny is often overwhelming...to make sometimes life altering decisions for ourselves and others. Ask yourself this, if you make a mistake at your job do you face the prospect of criminal charges? I do , everyday...a judgment error doesn't just come with a reprimand I could face jail...but I love it and I'm doing my bit for the community to make it safer for everyone; people who think Australia is a police state have never experienced what a police state is like.
All I can say to that is this:
Note the direct quotes--no spin -- I saw the same live interview myself.
A man says a speeding driver crashed into his car after he was directed by police to form a roadblock on the Hume Freeway.
David Rendina was driving down the Hume Freeway on Saturday morning with girlfriend and two children, aged 8 and 9 years old.
He had had a call from his girlfriend's mother saying she'd heard something about a pursuit on the freeway.
"At the time I sort of didn't think too much about it," says David.
About a kilometre before the Western Ring Rd at Epping, police were stopping all southbound traffic.
He says police directed traffic to fill the two lanes and the emergency lane, bringing three lanes of traffic to a standstill.
"I followed two other vehicles into the emergency lane," says David. "I'm the last one in line."
"I pretty much knew I was a sitting duck," says David. "I just remember seeing him speeding towards me."
David Rendina says the speeding car drove into the emergency lane and hit his car and several others.
He says police arrested the driver, took statements from those with damaged cars and made sure no one was injured.
David Rendina's car, a nine-month-old 2011 Nissan Navara Ute, has been left undrivable and he's unsure if it can be fixed.
David is an electrician has been left unable to work.
He says his children have had nightmares about the incident.
David Rendina says he doesn't believe it was worth the police putting his children at risk simply to capture a stolen vehicle.
Mr Rendina says he was put in a position he couldn't get out of.
"I was stuck there," he says.
I can agree with many of your friends comments but the truth is it did happen as I said according to very credible witnesses such as the man above and it can only be viewed as telling of the culture within the police force that anyone would think that was a good idea. I think people would expect nothing more than the minister to resign over that. You cannot have police using people to form road blocks. End of subject. You can't even have that thought out there, let alone the reality. That's what happened, however. As it happens I have lived in a police state at least wise one under martial law and the breaking out of it. I saw some pretty strange things but nothing as strange as the police ordering the citizenry to form road blocks. No one would be that bat shit crazy.