Stratford cops defend decision not to call off chase, call for tougher juvenile laws

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In a rare move, a judge ordered a 15-year-old boy held in custody after police say he took them on a wild chase in a stolen dump truck.

Meanwhile, Stratford police brass are defending their decision not to call off the dangerous chase, citing a threat to public safety by the young driver.

“If he struck one vehicle, if we let him go and he continues to drive recklessly, is he going to strike somebody else,” Capt. Frank Eannotti wondered.

Eannotti told us a routine internal look at the chase is underway to “make sure they’re compliant with policy.”  He also told us the real problem is a revolving door in juvenile justice which is paralyzing police agencies.

Original story: Stratford teen arrested after police chase stolen dump truck down Route 1 in Milford

“We’re are experiencing the same frustration. Some are doing major crimes or committing major violations.  Sales or possession of drugs, weapons possession, stolen cars, engaging the police in pursuits, then nothing happens,” he said.

Christina Quaranta of the Connecticut Juvenile Justice Alliance sees it differently.  She says the problem is too much jail for kids.  

Incarceration we know is not the answer,” Quaranta said.  “It’s not good for public safety.  It is expensive.”  

One thing most do agree on is there seems to be a growing trend of crime among some teens.

“I think if it continues the way it’s going to go, it’s gonna get even more out of control,” said Eannotti.

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