SAN MARCOS, California – Jose Alfredo Malacara, 29, was struck and killed early Tuesday morning as he was attempting to cross San Marcos Boulevard when he was hit by a San Diego Sheriff’s patrol car on pursuit of an unknown criminal, according to a press release issued by the San Diego Medical Examiner.
Malacara, who was living with family friends in the area, was allegedly crossing the roadway mid-block or outside an intersection about 1:33 a.m. The police car was traveling at high speed during a pursuit when the pedestrian accident took place in the 1000 block of San Marcos Boulevard, the report said.
Malacara died of multiple blunt force trauma at the scene of the pedestrian accident, the report said.
Indeed there were 3,146 people killed in 2,654 crashes resulting from police pursuits in the United States between 1994 and 2002, according to a University of Washington, study entitled “Motor vehicle crash deaths related to police pursuits in the United States,” by F. P. Rivara and C. D. Mack, Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center and Departments of Pediatrics and Epidemiology.
According to the University report, there were 40 police officers killed in that period. However, roughly a third of the people who died in these pursuits or 1,048 people were not the criminals that police were pursing in the chase, but instead they were pedestrians, bicyclists and occupants of other vehicles on the roadways.
“Police officers who are pursuing a criminal in a high-speed chase are required under California law to turn on their police sirens and lights to alert other motorists and pedestrians of the pursuit,” said Attorney West Thomas. “A police officer who fails to warn of a pursuit, or who doesn’t follow established protocol, could be held liable for the wrongful death of a person hit during such a chase.”
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