About ten years ago, there was a spate of thefts/muggings in N1 in which a pillion rider on a scooter snatched (mostly) unsecured Ortlieb panniers off bikes. Those often contained laptops or other valuables. It took the police a long time to be able to take action on this; they had to get off-road motorbikes because of the traffic calming in the area, and even though they knew where the lock-up was where the scooters were kept, and probably also some proceeds of theft, they waited carefully until they could swoop without endangering anyone.
It was around that time I first heard about police guidelines against chasing, and these, which I assume are still in place, seem eminently sensible. On that occasion, collars were felt and nobody got injured. Reading the report of this death (I rode past the site yesterday, a massive heap of flowers was there), the mode of chasing seems to me excessive, but I'll wait what further reporting says actually happened before I form a firmer view.
I got told by an officer I spoke with that they are allowed to chase a moped/scooter/motorbike/quadbike rider but if they then remove helmets the risk of injury is that much higher and so they must stop the chase as even just following them could result in more erratic riding and a crash. It's a very openly exploited bit of policy.
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