Bill Dwelle, a Perkins Township Trustee, wants a third-party review of the police chase that ended in a rollover April 30.
The chase began at 4:50 p.m. when two suspects shoplifted clothing from JC Penney and fled the scene in a Scion XB. At one point during the chase, a child riding her bicycle in a quiet cul-de-sac was nearly struck by the Scion.
The two suspects drove west on Perkins Avenue, were chased through Perkins Township and later onto Ohio 4 where they crashed at Ohio 2, hitting an oncoming Honda Civic and flipping the stolen Scion.
Dwelle said he isn't alleging that police shouldn't have pursued the subjects, but wants a careful review of the chase to protect the township from liability. He added that the department could use the chase review as a learning experience to make future pursuits safer for citizens.
Police Chief Tim McClung said the department has already conducted a debriefing and review of the chase, an action Tim Coleman, Perkins Township Board of Trustees chairman supported.
The board discussed the issue further, with Dwelle explaining he would like an outside review of the chase. The board did not make a formal decision.
"Of course we're not going to say let the bad guys go and just turn themselves in," Coleman said. "But occasional review won't hurt anything."
Also during the Tuesday morning meeting:
• Trustees approved a resolution to allow the township to hold property owners' insurance checks for structures and properties destroyed by fire or natural disaster to ensure the structures are properly demolished or reconstructed.
• Trustees approved paving Briar Lane because the adjoining road on one side of the drive was repaved during the past two years and the other is slated for paving by the county this summer. The county will pave the road but the township will fund the $7,800 project.
• Trustees approved an agreement for engineering services at the Strickfaden Park site location on Bell Avenue. The agreement includes topographical data and a conceptual rendering.
• Township resident Jim Caldwell asked trustees to handle a recent altercation between Fire Chief Rick Myosky and Perkins Police Lt. Al Matthews promptly.
"This fiasco cannot continue," he said, urging trustees to get rid of the problem quickly. Caldwell also reminded the trustees the township residents can recall board members if they don't do their due diligence.