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County Executive Leopold Suspends Speed Enforcement Policy and Calls for 30-Day Evaluation

Annapolis, MD (June 22, 2007) - Anne Arundel County Executive John R. Leopold announced that effective immediately, he has instructed the Anne Arundel County Police Department to suspend speed enforcement details that require officers to step out into traffic to signal or direct violators to pull over. This decision, pending a 30-day evaluation, comes in light of the recent death of Howard County Officer Scott Wheeler, who succumbed to injuries resulting from being struck by a vehicle while participating in a "Step Out" speed enforcement detail.

"Stepping into traffic puts both the officer and motorist at risk," said County Executive Leopold. "Police Chief Teare and I agree that the men and women hired to safeguard our citizens must be allowed the same consideration to ensure the protection of everyone involved."

The Anne Arundel County Police Department will evaluate its speed enforcement programs for the next 30 days in the interest of public safety as well as officer safety. An extensive review will be conducted, and upon conclusion a decision will be rendered determining if the "Step Out" enforcement policy should be permanently discontinued or modified.

The Department would like to remind motorist and citizens that speeding complaints will continue to be a priority for officers’ attention, and speed enforcement efforts will continue on county roadways utilizing other methods.

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