Police don't want rules changed after fleeing suspect steals their guns

The Police Association says an officer's mistake of leaving keys in the patrol car could have happened to anyone. 

An alleged offender escaped officers in Gore on Wednesday. The driver rammed a patrol car before fleeing on foot, with officers also chasing on foot. 

The offender then stole a patrol vehicle and rammed another police car, before abandoning the vehicle a short while later, taking two police-issued Glock pistols with him.

Deputy Police Commissioner John Tims said the incident was embarrassing.

But Police Association president Chris Cahill believes there is no need to change the rules about how keys are kept.

"There is nothing worse than if you've got in the car with the keys to the car, but there were no keys to the gun safe... I wouldn't like to see wholesale changes to a system that actually does work on most occasions."

Police remain armed as they search for suspect Hori Gemmell.

Cahill empathises with the officer who made the mistake.

"No one would be more embarrassed than the officer who did it. But it could have happened to any officer - you get the adrenaline, you get hyped up, tunnel vision to catch an offender - and you make that mistake."

He says the officer would have been filled with adrenaline.

"You get involved in a case, your vehicle's rammed... your first instinct is to grab the offender. Unfortunately, by leaving the keys behind, he's left a pretty difficult situation to clean up."

Gemmell is dangerous and should not be approached, police said. 

"We ask that anyone who has information about Gemmell's whereabouts, or who may have seen him, call 111 immediately or Crimestoppers anonymously, or Gore police station on (03) 203 9300," said Supt Paul Basham.

Newshub.

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