PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A Pennsylvania lawmaker says there are too many unknowns when it comes to even minor traffic accidents, and he wants to make it mandatory that cops respond and investigate.
Last year, Philadelphia police stopped showing up to look into every reported fender-bender, saying that only a small number of the tens of thousands of crash calls they get every year are serious enough to require an officer at the scene.
But Pennsylvania state representative Angel Cruz (D-Phila., above) says that opens the door to fraud, insurance liability, and personal safety issues.
“If it’s a DUI case, he’s really not going to go to the police district until he sobers up. So how many other accidents will he get involved in before he gets to that police district?” Cruz wonders.
Now, Rep. Cruz wants to change the language in state law to mandate that cops investigate when even a minor crash is reported — and not to simply make victims file their own reports, as is done in Philadelphia.
Police brass say the force is spread too thin. But Philadelphia FOP president John McNesby (right) says that despite budget woes, the city needs more cops to do the job.
“What’s it going to be next? We’re going to stop responding to 911 calls for robberies, assaults?” he asks.
Reported by Ian Bush, KYW Newsradio 1060