It took just eight minutes for a shoplifting case to turn into a death investigation. Police on Long Island are facing serious questions after the men they were pursuing slammed into another vehicle. Those men are alive, but an innocent person is dead. NBCNewYork?s Chris Glorioso reports.
The Suffolk County Sheriff's Department is reviewing Tuesday's high-speed chase on Long Island that ended with a fatal crash, but the chief of the department says it appears at this point that officers followed procedure.
The chase from the Tanger Outlet Center began shortly after 1 p.m. when Riverhead police issued a radio alert about three people in a Lincoln Town Car, believed to have stolen $4,000 in merchandise.
A Suffolk County deputy sheriff spotted the suspects at Exit 67 on the Long Island Expressway and followed them, police said.
The driver of the Lincoln stopped at Exit 64 of the Long Island Expressway but then sped away as police approached the vehicle, authorities said. The car then headed south on Route 112 and west on the northbound side of the Sunset Highway service road.
At the intersection of Lincoln Avenue, the car crashed into a silver Subaru, killing a female passenger inside the car, identified as Gail Sacher, of Holbrook.
The three suspects were arrested.
Police said Tuesday that the officers followed policy, including that a supervisor was monitoring the pursuit.