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Why Do Police Chases Happen?

  • Written by NewsServices.com

It seems that there is always some type of police chase or other happening on the news. Whether it’s a simple hit and run where the hitter keeps running, even when they are being pursued, or a more complicated endeavor involving multiple cars, a convoy of cops, or even military vehicles, no news report would be complete without a police chase. But what constitutes a police chase, and why is the nation of the United States of America so particularly fascinated by them? Below we’ll look at the likely causes of an average police chase, why there appears to be such a psychological interest in their happening by folks all around the country, and whether or not we can ever expect to stop seeing them on our television screens.

Police Chases and America

While other countries do occasionally get police chases, it is widely recognized that this type of entertainment is a uniquely American pastime. News commentators in the UK and beyond have expressed astonishment at the enjoyment – even glee – that both viewers and presenters in America seem to glean from watching a police car (or a series of police cars) chase another car through a city.

Maybe it isn’t too surprising considering the country of the United States was founded on car culture: Fordism is at the root of much of the American culture, meaning that American is founded on the premise of manufacturing and driving cars. Car chases also provide an immensely dramatic piece of news: some car chases have gone on for as long as 70 miles, and included hostage taking, firearm waving, and, of course, extremely fast driving.

For criminals who know they are going to be arrested, there is often no reason not to lead police on a chase. And if, in the bargain, they know that they’ll get their face on the news, then that’s not the worst thing either. After all, research shows that criminals who engage in dangerous and high profile crimes often display signs of sociopathy and psychopathy, meaning their obsession with their own perception by others ranks above all else in their minds.

Police Chases in Culture

Whether because America was built on cars or because criminals are vain psychopaths who want to be on the news, police chases are now a major feature of life. This means that those who have committed crimes are that much more likely to try and make a run for it, while police are that much more likely to take pursuit. This is so much the case that there are now specific police chase lawyers who specialize in making claims for the damage done to property or individuals during a car chase.

Whether or not you believe that police car chases are a worthy form of entertainment, there’s no denying that they are a deeply embedded part of American culture, and it’s unlikely that they’ll go anywhere soon! Still, the next time you see a shop get held up and watch the perpetrator of the crime speed away in a stolen car, it might be best to stay off the local highways for a while!

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