ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The union representing Albany police officers wants to end its partnership with the Albany County Sheriff’s Office because it does not support the sheriff’s office high-speed vehicle pursuits.

Union Pres. Michael Delano released a statement after an incident led to a crash at the intersection of South Lake Avenue and Western Avenue Monday night. The crash caused injuries to another driver.

In his statement, he said:

Over the last several months, the Albany County Sheriff’s Office have initiated high speed
vehicle pursuits that have resulted in dangerous motor vehicle crashes within the City of
Albany. On Monday evening, another high speed ACSO pursuit ended in a motor vehicle crash
at the intersection of N Lake Ave and Western Ave, resulting in injuries to an innocent motorist.
These pursuits occur without immediate communication to the City of Albany Police
Department and with no clear command and control, ultimately putting our community and
officers at risk.

This partnership between the City of Albany and the Albany County Sheriff’s Office is not safe
and it is not helpful to us as patrol officers and detectives. While we appreciate our deputies’
efforts and intent, we demand the current arrangement as it exists now, come to an end.

In years past, we have partnered with ACSO Deputies and NYS Troopers in what is referred
to as Joint Patrols. Joint Patrols utilize a collaborative approach to law enforcement, pairing
Officers, Deputies, and Troopers to enhance enforcement, communication, and joint lines of
effort. When necessary, Joint Patrols are safer and a more effective practice for supporting
operations within the City of Albany.

Delano said car chases put other drivers at an unnecessary risk.

Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple claims Monday’s incident was not a “pursuit,” and that by the time the deputies got in their car and started driving, the suspect was already crashing.

“The incident [Monday night] involved a parolee fleeing after shoving something down his pants,” Apple wrote in a statement, adding that it was believed to be a weapon. He said the subject crashed two tenths of a mile away, and had crack, fentanyl, and heroin in his possession.

Apple and Albany Police Chief Eric Hawkins spoke on the phone regarding the situation after the Union released their statement, according to Apple and a spokesman for APD.

“The safety and security of the Albany community remains my top priority,” Hawkins said in a statement. “We’re constantly assessing the efficacy of our partnerships with other law enforcement agencies.”

The Chief and Sheriff plan to meet within the week with their command staffs.