7-400 Vehicle Operation



Under normal conditions, personnel will operate police vehicles in the same manner as required for the public. Violations of motor vehicle laws when not authorized, or careless and abusive use of police vehicular equipment may result in disciplinary action. (12/14/07)

Vehicles shall not be driven when they are in unsafe mechanical condition. Officers shall inspect their assigned vehicle before each tour of duty and immediately report any damage or mechanical failure to their supervisor.

Minn. Stat. §169.541 exempts peace officers from statutes relating to the lighting of vehicles and watercraft:

The standards that have been adopted are: (12/31/91)

A peace officer may not operate without lights: (12/31/91)


AIR SUPPORT - For the purpose of this policy, it shall mean a Minnesota State Patrol Helicopter. (See Volume 7, section on Minnesota State Patrol Helicopter)

EMERGENCY DRIVING - Emergency driving occurs whenever an officer intentionally drives in excess of the speed limit or in violation of any traffic control device. Emergency driving is authorized only when reasonably necessary in the performance of official duties. (12/14/07)

GREAT BODILY HARM - Bodily injury, which creates a high probability of death, or which causes serious permanent disfiguration, or which causes a permanent or protracted loss or impairment of any bodily member or organ or other serious bodily harm.

IDENTIFICATION - The officer can establish the identification of the offender so that an apprehension can be made at another time.

OFFENDER - The operator of a vehicle being pursued who has been signaled to stop.

PARALLEL THE PURSUIT ROUTE - To operate a police vehicle in a manner that indicates pursuit participation by traveling in the same direction as the pursuit route on an adjacent or parallel roadway.


FULLY-MARKED SQUAD CAR - Any vehicle used by the MPD that has clearly identifying police markings, emergency lights visible from front, sides and rear, siren, and a manufacturer's rating to make it suitable for pursuits. Currently, the Ford Crown Victoria, Ford Police Interceptor SUV, Chevrolet Caprice, and the Chevy Tahoe Police Pursuit Vehicle (PPV) are the only vehicles in the MPD Fleet with such a rating. (05/03/02) (12/14/07) (02/08/13)

LOW PROFILE SQUAD CAR - Any vehicle used by the MPD that has a permanent or temporary MPD door marking, emergency lights visible from front, sides and rear, siren, and a manufacturer's rating to make it suitable for pursuits. (12/14/07)

UNMARKED SQUAD CAR - Any vehicle used by the MPD not clearly identified with a shield, logo or department name that has emergency lights visible from the front, sides and rear, and a manufacturer’s rating to make it suitable for pursuits. (12/14/07)

OTHER MPD VEHICLES can be used in emergency response if properly equipped with emergency lights and siren. (12/14/07)

PRIMARY SQUAD - The initial squad car in a vehicular pursuit. (12/14/07)

PURSUIT SUPERVISOR - The immediate supervisor of the pursuing officer, the precinct supervisor where the pursuit began, an adjacent precinct supervisor, or the Watch Commander.

ROADBLOCK - Placing a marked squad, either moving or stationary, in the roadway to narrow or block the escape route of the vehicle being pursued.

SECONDARY SQUADS - Police squad cars that provide direct support to the primary squad and follow the primary squad at a safe distance. When secondary marked squads engage in the pursuit, the officers will advise the dispatcher of their involvement. Vehicle pursuits will be limited to the primary marked squad and no more than two secondary marked squads unless otherwise authorized by the pursuit supervisor. (12/14/07)

TERMINATE - A pursuit is considered to be terminated when the officer discontinues the use of all emergency equipment and slows the marked squad car to the posted speed limit and turns off the pursuit route at the next available intersection.

VEHICLE CONTACT - The intentional striking by a police vehicle of a vehicle being pursued.

VEHICULAR PURSUIT - A vehicular pursuit occurs whenever an officer pursues a driver of a vehicle who has been given a signal to stop by the activation of red lights and siren, and the suspect or violator fails to comply and attempts to elude the officer by taking evasive actions.



Only police vehicles with lights and sirens are authorized for emergency response. All MPD officers shall use red lights and sirens in a continuous manner for any emergency driving. Officers responding to a Code 3 emergency shall exercise caution and due consideration for the safety of the public. Although Minn. Stat. §169.03 and 169.17 exempts officers from traffic statutes, the use of the red lights and siren does not exempt officers from the need for caution nor does it exempt them from criminal or civil liability. Officers driving low profile, unmarked, motorcycles, or other MPD vehicles should be particularly aware of the less visible nature of the emergency equipment in/on the vehicle and should use extra caution. (12/14/07)

Officers are advised that circumventing light rail intersection crossing arms is a very dangerous practice. Officers going around the light rail crossing arms when they are down causes the light rail train operator to emergency brake the light rail car. When the light rail car is emergency braked, it causes passengers to be ejected from their seats and thrown to the floor, which could cause serious injury or death. Due to these risks, officers are prohibited from going around the light rail crossing arms when they are down at an intersection. (02/23/05)

7-404 PURSUIT POLICY (11/20/01)


The MPD is committed to prevent crime, maintain order and protect the public from unreasonable danger wherever possible. Intrinsic to the nature of policing is the apprehension of criminals and the enforcement of law at every level. In order to enforce the laws of the city and state, officers are often called upon to pursue suspects who choose not to obey an officers lawful command to submit to arrest and flee, either on foot or in a conveyance.

Motor vehicles are the primary conveyance with which offenders attempt to elude the police. Recognizing that every vehicle has the potential to cause serious bodily injury to innocent third parties, officers shall use reasonable professional judgment in deciding when, where, and to what extent they will initiate pursuit of suspects in motor vehicles. The initiation and continuation of any pursuit are predicated on factors known to the officer such as the seriousness of the violation, the consequences of not apprehending the suspect, the probability of apprehending the suspect without undue risk to the public at large, and the potential for continued criminal activity, if not apprehended.

Officers shall always be aware of the inherent danger to the public and to themselves in vehicle pursuits or emergency responses. They shall continuously weigh the need and desirability for apprehension against the risk created for the officers and the general public. The officers must also take into account factors such as traffic volume, time of day, weather, circumstances of the emergency and the type of violation when becoming involved in pursuits.



Officers involved in a vehicular pursuit shall exercise caution and due consideration for the safety of the public. Fully marked, low profile and unmarked squads can initiate a pursuit. Low profile and unmarked squads shall discontinue their involvement once a fully marked squad is involved. Motorcycles and other police vehicles shall not be used in pursuits. Officers shall use red lights and siren in a continuous manner for any emergency driving or vehicular pursuit. The use of red light and siren does not exempt officers from the need for caution. (12/14/07)

Officers will not engage in pursuits outside the corporate city limits of Minneapolis, unless authorized. During a pursuit, officers shall not drive their vehicle the wrong way on freeways. They may, however, go down the wrong way of a freeway ramp to make a traffic stop on a vehicle going the wrong way to prevent it from entering the main portion of the freeway. Officers may not pursue the wrong direction on one-way streets without due consideration for existing conditions as listed below.

A pursuit is justified after an offender has engaged in evasive tactics only when an officer knows or has reasonable grounds to believe that the fleeing offender committed an offense and there is a reasonable expectation of a successful apprehension of the offender.

Officers shall not initiate a pursuit or shall discontinue a pursuit in progress whenever any of the following conditions exist: 

  1. The vehicle was previously pursued by MPD personnel or other agencies and the pursuit was terminated. Officers will not reinitiate a pursuit within 20 minutes of the termination, unless there are exigent circumstances. (02/18/13

    If MPD officers have no knowledge of the initial pursuit and/or develop an independent reason for a stop they may attempt to stop the vehicle. (02/18/13)
  2. The pursuit poses an unreasonable risk to the officers, and/or the general public, or the seriousness of the offense(s) is such that continued pursuit creates an unreasonable risk to the officers and/or the public. (02/18/13)
  3. The officer can establish the identification of the offender so that an apprehension can be made at another time unless the crime is for: (02/18/13)

-- Homicide
-- 1st and 2nd degree assault
-- Aggravated robbery
-- Sexual assault involving the use or threatened use of a dangerous weapon
-- Kidnapping

  1. Risks due to weather, road conditions, vehicle and/or pedestrian traffic outweigh the necessity to immediately arrest the suspect. (02/18/13)
  2. Immediate medical assistance is needed by anyone injured as a result of the pursuit and there is not a secondary pursuit vehicle to provide assistance. (02/18/13) 
  3. Whenever prisoners are in the squad. (02/18/13) 
  4. Whenever there is malfunction of police emergency equipment or radio communication. (02/18/13) 
  5. Whenever the distance between the primary pursuit squad and the offender is so great that further pursuit is futile. (02/18/13) 
  6. Situations in which the primary pursuit marked squad loses visual contact of the offender for a significant period of time (approximately 10-15 seconds). (02/18/13)

Whenever any non-MPD employees are in a police vehicle, officers may only initiate a pursuit under the following conditions: (05/03/02) (12/14/07)

However, the officers must terminate their participation in the pursuit upon the involvement of a squad that is able to take over as the primary pursuit vehicle.

Any officers involved in a pursuit have the right to decide whether or not to terminate their participation in a pursuit, or to transfer their responsibility to another squad. Officers will immediately take and acknowledge direction from the assigned pursuit supervisor.



All department employees involved in a vehicular pursuit shall follow the procedures listed in this section.


Officers in the primary pursuit marked squad shall:

  1. Activate red lights and siren.
  2. Turn up the radio and roll up the windows.
  3. Notify dispatcher by radio of the location, speed, direction of travel, and reason for the pursuit. (10/26/2000) (11/20//01)
  4. Identify the vehicle and its occupants as completely as possible.
  5. Call out the location and direction of the pursued vehicle as frequently as possible.
  6. If an accident occurs with the possibility of injury the primary vehicle shall designate a secondary pursuit vehicle to stop and check for injuries and render medical assistance. Primary officers must receive acknowledgement from a secondary vehicle. If an acknowledgement is not received or there are no secondary vehicles assisting in the pursuit, the primary vehicle must immediately terminate and check for injuries. All acknowledgements shall be made via radio. (12/14/07)
  7. Notify or acknowledge via radio whenever the pursuit has been terminated.
  8. Complete an offense/incident report entitled "FLEE" and all other necessary reports.
  9. Whenever possible, officers in the primary pursuit vehicle will not physically remove the offender or passengers from the vehicle, but should wait for the officers in the secondary pursuit vehicle to arrive and remove the offender or passengers.
  10. Primary pursuit officers will not transport the arrested suspect unless authorized by the pursuit supervisor. (11/20/01)

Officers shall terminate a pursuit if they believe the risk created for the officers and the general public outweighs the need and desirability for apprehension.


Officers in the secondary pursuit vehicles shall:

  1. Activate red lights and siren.
  2. Turn up the radio and roll up the windows.
  3. Notify the dispatcher by radio of their involvement in the pursuit. (11/20/01)
  4. Maintain a safe distance from the initiating squad, but remain close enough to provide back-up assistance when needed. At no time shall the secondary squad pass the primary squad unless requested by the primary squad. Officers should be alert to the fact that citizens will see the primary squad proceed, and may assume that it is the only emergency vehicle in the area and may be unaware or inattentive to the second emergency vehicle, especially if it is far behind the pursuing vehicle. (11/20/01)
  5. Be prepared to take over as the primary vehicle if the existing primary squad becomes disabled or is unable to continue the pursuit.
  6. Give the location and status of the pursuit when the pursued vehicle is stopped if the primary squad has not done so.
  7. Immediately acknowledge directions, via radio, given by the primary vehicle regarding accidents. (12/14/07)
  8. Notify or acknowledge via radio whenever the pursuit has been terminated.
  9. Remove offenders and passengers from vehicle when pursuit results in an apprehension, then transport. (11/20/01)
  10. Make a statement in CAPRS regarding their involvement in the pursuit.

Officers in the secondary pursuit vehicles shall discontinue their involvement in the pursuit if they believe the risk created for the officers and the general public outweighs the need and desirability for apprehension.

7-406.03 ROLE OF DISPATCHERS (7/26/03)

Dispatchers involved in a police pursuit shall:

  1. Repeat the initial information and the speed and direction of travel of the vehicular pursuit if the squad calling the pursuit is difficult to understand.
  2. Keep the radio channel being used for the pursuit clear of unnecessary traffic.
  3. Broadcast the pursuit information on channels used by adjacent precincts and again when the pursuits have entered adjacent precincts. However, the pursuit will remain on the channel which initiated the pursuit. Dispatchers will advise squads responding to assist from other precincts to notify their dispatcher and switch to the pursuit channel.
  4. Designate a pursuit supervisor if one has not immediately acknowledged the responsibility.
  5. Patch radio communication whenever a pursuit enters another jurisdiction.
  6. Respond to directions from the pursuit supervisor or from any of the following if they have taken over the pursuit responsibility: (12/14/07)

Any supervisor in the Field Services Bureau above the rank of sergeant

Watch Commander

Deputy Chief

Assistant Chief


  1. Continue monitoring the pursuit until it has been terminated.
  2. Transmit a "tone" signal when the pursuit is terminated.
  3. Complete MECC Supplementary Police Pursuit Reporting Form (MP-3806) and forward it to Accident Investigation personnel in the Traffic Unit. (10/26/2000).



The pursuit supervisor shall:

  1. Acknowledge responsibility of the pursuit over the radio. (12/14/07)
  2. Monitor the pursuit.
  3. Request air support when deemed necessary.
  4. Exercise their authority and responsibility to decide whether to commit additional squads or to terminate the pursuit if they believe that the risk to the general public and officers outweighs the necessity to immediately arrest the suspect. (02/18/13)
  5. Respond as soon as possible to the scene when the pursuit is terminated with the apprehension of a suspect or at the scene of a collision. If the pursuit is called off, the pursuit supervisor does not have to respond to the scene. (12/14/07)
  6. Wherever practical, supervisors shall not allow the offender or passengers to be removed from the vehicle by the primary pursuit officers. The arrested suspect(s) shall not be transported by the primary pursuit vehicle unless specifically authorized by the pursuit supervisor. (11/20/01) (12/14/07)
  7. Make a statement in CAPRS regarding their involvement in the pursuit.
  8. Immediately review the pursuit for compliance with department policies and procedures. A digital recording of the pursuit may be obtained from MECC by the pursuit supervisor. The request shall be made by emailing "911 Recording" via City of Minneapolis email. (11/20/01) (02/18/13)

  9. Write a pursuit summary memo including all of the following information: (12/14/07)

    • Date and time of the pursuit and the Case Control Number (CCN);
    • Squad(s) involved in the pursuit;
    • Offense that led to the attempted stop;
    • General route of the pursuit, approximate distance covered and approximate speeds attained;
    • Description of the weather and road conditions;
    • Outcome of the pursuit including a description of any damage or injuries sustained as a result of the pursuit;
    • Statement as to whether department policies were followed during the pursuit;
    • Any other information deemed relevant 

    10. The Pursuit Summary Memo shall be emailed as an attachment to: (12/14/07) (02/18/13) 

    a. Precinct Commander(s) of the involved precinct(s) (02/18/13)

    b. Deputy Chief of the Patrol Bureau (02/18/13)

    c. Pursuit Review Committee (Police - Pursuit Review Committee). (02/18/13) (05/24/13)  

    11. The Deputy Chief of Patrol shall forward a copy of the Pursuit Summary memo to the Commander of the Traffic Unit to aid in the completion of reports as required per Minn. Stat. §626.5532. (12/14/07) (02/18/13)  



In addition to the responsibilities and authorities given to the officers listed above, the following individuals have the authority to terminate or take control of a pursuit and will make a statement in CAPRS regarding their involvement in the pursuit: (11/20/01) (12/14/07)



When engaged in a vehicular pursuit, the tactical options listed in the following sub-sections should be considered.

7-407.01 AIR SUPPORT

Once contact is made with air support and air support has the suspect vehicle in sight, the primary squad may reduce the level of pursuit to that of a secondary squad.


Roadblocks may be used only when deadly force is justified. (Section 5-303). Procedures for setting up roadblocks are as follows:

  1. The pursuit supervisor’s approval shall be obtained to set up a roadblock. The pursuit supervisor may cancel a roadblock at any time. (11/20/01)
  2. Only marked squads will be used.
  3. The marked squads used to set up the roadblock will be unoccupied. Officers from those vehicles shall be a safe distance away from the roadblock in case the pursued vehicle strikes a police vehicle. (11/20/01)
  4. Marked squad used in the roadblock will have all emergency lighting activated. When possible, there shall also be a reasonable distance to allow the driver of the pursued vehicle to stop before striking a police vehicle.
  5. The number of police vehicles used in a roadblock shall be limited to only those necessary to cause the offender to stop.

This policy is not intended to prohibit the strategic placement of squads on side streets, driveways, parking lots and alleys to eliminate potential escape routes and assist in controlling a pursuit.


Vehicle contact, rolling roadblocks and roadblocks may only be used when state law permits use of deadly force. (See Volume 5, section on Justified Use of Force) (11/20/01)


If a vehicular pursuit involves a hostage, the safety of the hostage must be the primary consideration in determining the tactics that will be used during the pursuit. As soon as the existence of a hostage is known that information shall be communicated to the pursuit supervisor.


When a pursuit has been terminated, the pursuing officers shall notify dispatch and:

  1. Reduce speed to the posted speed limits. (11/20/01)
  2. Turn off emergency lights and sirens.
  3. Turn off the pursuit route at the next available intersection.

If an offender is apprehended:

  1. Offer a breath/blood test if Probable Cause exists for DUI.
  2. Obtain statements from passengers and witnesses.
  3. Complete arrest report and all other necessary reports.


When available, uninvolved Traffic Unit officers are responsible for investigating and completing an accident report for all MPD pursuits that end in the city of Minneapolis, except when it involves a critical incident. (10/21/05)

Car 710, with the assistance of Traffic Unit personnel, shall investigate pursuits involving critical incidents. (10/21/05)



In any pursuit, regardless of the initiating agency or jurisdiction, MPD vehicles shall observe existing MPD policies regarding pursuits.

If another agency involved in a pursuit enters the city limits, MPD officers shall not assist in the pursuit unless authorized by a supervisor. (12/14/07)

Dispatchers will advise affected precinct channels of a pursuit entering Minneapolis from another jurisdiction and advise on which radio channel the pursuit is occurring. Dispatch will assign a precinct supervisor from the affected precinct to monitor the situation. The precinct supervisor will advise if further assistance will be given. (12/14/07)

Dispatch will also try to ascertain the following information: (11/20/01) (7/26/03)

  1. The need for assistance by the pursuing agency.
  2. The reason for the pursuit. (11/20/01)
  3. Description of the vehicle and the direction of travel.

If more than two squads from other agencies are involved in the pursuit, only one authorized MPD marked squad shall assist in the pursuit.

The initiating agency will be in charge of the arrest scene when they arrive.

The initiating agency retains the authority to terminate pursuit.

In the event vehicles from the initiating agency cannot continue, the pursuit supervisor may authorize MPD police officers to take responsibility for the pursuit if:

  1. They are in position to do so. (11/20/01)
  2. The offender being pursued fits the MPD's pursuit policy.

Officers involved in another agency’s pursuit shall not leave the Minneapolis city limits unless authorized by the pursuit supervisor.


Authorization must be given over the air by the pursuit supervisor before a pursuit initiated by an MPD officer leaves the City limits. (12/14/07)

A pursuit supervisor shall continue to monitor any out-of-city pursuit and respond to the scene when the pursuit is terminated.

The pursuit will be patched to an inter-op channel and all squads must precede their squad number with the word "Minneapolis". (07/26/03)

MPD officers have the authority to terminate pursuits out of the city of Minneapolis whenever an MPD marked squad is the primary pursuit vehicle.

If a vehicular pursuit ends with an accident, the jurisdiction in which the accident occurs shall be responsible for the accident scene and the subsequent accident investigation.

Dispatchers will inform other agencies when a pursuit initiated by the MPD is entering their jurisdiction.



The primary officer who initiates a pursuit is responsible for completing a CAPRS offense report entitled "FLEE." The report shall contain:

In addition:

7-412 REVIEW OF PURSUITS (10/26/2000) (02/08/13) (08/05/13)

The MPD Pursuit Review Committee will review all pursuits involving MPD personnel and MPD vehicles.



Officers will not provide emergency escorts for private vehicles except under extreme or exigent circumstances. Officers may provide emergency escort for other emergency vehicles equipped with red lights and sirens, when requested to do so.

Police vehicles should not be used to transport persons in need of physical medical attention except when ambulances are not available. Persons in need of medical attention shall normally be transported by ambulance and/or other medical equipment. (03/19/97)

Employees shall not transport persons in police vehicles except for a proper police purpose or on official department business.

7-414 GLOBAL POSITIONING SYSTEMS (GPS) IN SQUADS (06/19/07) (08/05/13)


The purpose of this policy is to establish policies and procedures regarding the use of Global Positioning Systems (GPS) equipment in squads. The intended purpose of implementing and using GPS in MPD squads is to increase officer safety, facilitate more rapid response times to 911 calls and to manage the department’s resources effectively.

Supervisors may utilize GPS tracking capabilities, systems, information or data as a management tool within their chain of command. However, the MPD agrees not to use the GPS tracking capabilities, systems, information or data pro-actively to initiate a disciplinary investigation of any officer or officers outside their chain of command, absent independent and reliable information, which must be obtained through a separate credible source, that such an investigation is warranted.

Officers are prohibited from altering or attempting to alter or disable GPS systems in MPD squads.




Last updated Oct 5, 2018



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