Over the past two years, Americans have gotten a very clear look at what happens when law enforcement is dismissed and dismantled. Demonizing and defunding the police ultimately leads to preventable problems, upticks in crime, low morale amongst officers, and worse.
Across multiple states, the fallout of vilifying law enforcement continues. In San Francisco and New York City, some business owners are shutting down their establishments altogether, owing to shoplifting and other crimes.
In Washington state, driving and being on the road are becoming increasingly more dangerous. This is owing to a new and disturbing trend of drivers just completely ignoring law enforcement.
Troubling News From Washington Police Officers
Over the course of 2022, state patrol officers in Washington have found themselves being ignored when calling for drivers to pull over. From the beginning of January to the middle of May, 934 cases involving failure-to-yield have been documented by officers.
Additional information from troopers also reveals a rise in motorists speeding away from traffic stops. Officials who have been on the job for decades note that this occurs on a daily basis during night times and then on a weekly basis during day shifts.
It goes without saying that persistent increases in these sorts of incidents can lead to serious accidents on the road. These accidents can be fatal and needlessly cost people their lives.
Some of the folks in Washington state who refuse to stop for police officers are known criminals. Law enforcement has tracked certain drivers as in possession of stolen vehicles or otherwise implicated in crime.
What Caused the Change?
Under a new police reform law in Washington state, officers are legally banned from pursuit of drivers. This applies unless officers have reasonable cause to think the individual in question is a felon or guilty of other serious crimes.
Alterations to the pursuit law have led many people to believe this could be why Washington patrol troops are having a harder time with drivers.
Washington Democrats who passed the police reform law that changes officers’ leeway to pursue drivers have not commented on the latest problems of state patrol officers.
However, for law enforcement members who actually have boots on the ground, this is a very serious situation. If the trend continues, it could further hurt police morale in general and lead to new rises in law-breaking.