Houston police focus on saving lives, battling looters

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HPD Chief Art Acevedo told GMA they will rescue every person who has called by the end of the day. (KTRK)

As the sun rose over Houston this morning, police went to work to rescue victims of the flash flood emergency that left thousands of people stuck inside their flooded homes.

Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo told GMA that officers completed more than 2,000 rescue missions this weekend after Hurricane Harvey made landfall on the central Texas coast.

Harvey, since downgraded to a tropical storm, dumped catastrophic amounts of rain on Houston beginning Saturday, leaving thousands of drivers stranded and many more homes flooded out.

"I'm happy to report we're down to about 250 folks that are still waiting for rescues or locations," Acevedo said. "We've made some great progress, and we're just really grateful that despite the power of this storm, we haven't had more loss of life."

WATCH: HPD chief shocked by number of flooded cars
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Chief Acevedo said some people just didn't listen. Now their cars are underwater.



Acevedo sent a message to those still left without aid after nightfall Sunday: help is on the way.

"Hunker down, hold tight, we hear you, we feel you," Acevedo said. "We know where you're at, know we're coming, and this morning, sometime today, everyone should be recovered."

The chief also talked about the "heart-wrenching" impact Tropical Storm Harvey has had on his officers.

"I've had officers tear up with the things they've seen with these children in the middle of the night," Acevedo said.

Acevedo also said officers are focused on protecting the city from looters as floodwater recede.

"We've already arrested a handful of looters. We've made it real clear to our community we're going to do whatever it takes to protect their homes and their businesses," Acevedo said. "And when people come from the outside to Houston, Texas, know we're going to be out in the city, we're not going to rest as a police department or law enforcement community until people restore their lives."

Flood victims forced to climb into attics
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Meteorologist Tim Heller said if water is coming into your home, do not go to sleep without a plan.

Bus and truck nearly collide on Gulf Freeway during flood
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Wrong-way drivers and rising waters are a dangerous mix, as scene on the Gulf Freeway tonight.

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Related Topics:
hurricane harveytropical stormhouston floodfloodinghouston police departmentburglaryarrestHouston
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