by Scott Creighton
On Oct. 17 of this year at 7:42 pm, a horrible accident occurred in or around Dallas. An officer, traveling 30mph above the speed limit without lights and siren on, struck and killed an 8 year old boy. The accident was captured on his dashboard camcorder and you may view the news report from Dallas Fort Worth News, here. The spokesman for the Dallas Police Department rightly said that the officer should have had his lights and siren on traveling at that speed. Had the kid seen the lights or heard the siren, this may not have happened.
But I wondered about something else when I watched the video. The police cruiser seemed to be weaving in his lane, quite a lot during the 9 seconds of video. More than I would have been a 67 mph. And what is most troubling of all, is that the officer didn’t even attempt to avoid the kid on the bike… in fact, as I show with the still frames taken from the official video (after the break), the officer actually veered INTO the kid, rather than away from him.
Now accidents happen, and I am not trying to make things worse on this officer, the Dallas PD, or the child’s family… but in the interests of public safety I wonder if there is something wrong with the suspension of those patrol cars or maybe something else going on that is not being looked at. Whatever happened, the officer didn’t take any action to avoid the child. If he was checking his computer for information on the call he was rushing to, then perhaps there needs to be some kind of heads up display installed that keeps this kind of thing from happening again.
As I have laid out the still frames using two reference lines, it is clear to see that the officer was weaving in the lane and that the farthest he ever goes toward the center, is the moment he strikes the child.
It is with the deepest sympathies that I post this, to both the families of the child and the officer.