Video: Police pursuit ends in 'terrified' motorist hugging police chief
"She was scared,” said Chief James Richardson. “I talked to her to calm her down and then she hugged me”
By Brian Niemietz
New York Daily News
HODGENVILLE, Ky. — A police chase in Kentucky had a gripping ending as a terrified motorist hugged an officer leading the pursuit and surrendering peacefully. The Hodgenville Police Department congratulated one of its own for keeping a cool head during a situation that could have gone the other way.
“A great example of keeping your emotions in check at the end of a pursuit,” said a Facebook post praising Chief James Richardson.
The pursuit reportedly began when Latrece Curry, of Lebanon, Ky., fled from units in a neighboring county just as an ice storm was coming to town Wednesday. Police used a “rolling roadblock tactic” bring the pursuit to an end without injury, the department wrote on Facebook. TMZ reports Curry had been involved in an undisclosed domestic situation with her husband and hit the gas when police tried tracking her down.
Richardson described the look on Curry’s face as “sheer terror” when she was surrounded by officers with guns drawn, while squad sirens wailed.
“She was shaking and it was obvious she was scared,” Richardson said. “I talked to her to calm her down and then she hugged me.”
The 23-year law enforcement veteran said ending a pursuit with a hug was a first for him.
Curry, 41, was taken into custody without incident. Facebook users piled on praise for the peaceful conclusion to the harrowing incident.
“Teach your fellow officers please! This is how it’s done,” wrote Letitia Crawford. “Sometimes people just need a hug.”
Other praised Richardson not just for his compassion, but also for his cool.
“The difference between a man with 15 plus years with experience vs. a brand new gungho officer ready to whoop ass,” wrote Dom Howe. “This just made me tear up. This man has a heart of gold... thank god he was there.”
Hodgenville is a central Kentucky town consisting of about 2-square miles and has a population of just over 3,200 people. Abraham Lincoln was born in the area.
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