Video shows HPD officers speed through red light before crashing into innocent woman during chase

Brooke Taylor Image
Friday, August 4, 2023
Video shows HPD officers slam into innocent woman in high-speed chase
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The video shows the officers speed through the red light without appearing to slow down. HPD said the officers involved have been relieved of duty pending an internal affairs division investigation.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- New surveillance video shows the moment a Houston police patrol car sped through an intersection and slammed into an innocent driver during a high-speed chase in southwest Houston on Thursday.

The video shows the officer chasing the suspect speed through the red light without appearing to slow down at the intersection of Highway 6 and Beechnut Street in the Mission Bend area.

You can watch the surveillance footage in the video player above.

A 27-year-old woman who was not involved in the chase was driving the car that was struck. At last check, she was in critical condition.

According to the Houston Police Department, westside officers pulled over a driver because the license plate didn't match the make and model of the car. They said the driver pulled over at first, but as the officer went up to the car, the driver took off, and the officers chased after.

ORIGINAL REPORT: Woman in critical condition after HPD officers crash into uninvolved car during SW Houston chase

It's unclear how long the chase lasted before it ended in the dramatic crash around 1 a.m. Video from the scene shows just how intense the impact was. It's hard to even tell what kind of car was hit.

Police told ABC13 that the woman had to be extracted from her car by firefighters and taken by Life Flight to the medical center. The suspect they were chasing got away.

The officers who were in the patrol car have been relieved of duty pending an internal affairs division investigation, according to HPD.

"The Houston Police Department recognizes the inherent danger of pursuing a suspect fleeing in a motor vehicle. When an officer is involved in a pursuit, the incident is reviewed at several levels. These reviews can include the Crash Review Board, the Critical Incident Review Committee, and the Internal Affairs Division to determine whether any policies were violated," HPD Chief Troy Finner said in a statement.

The department has had the same police pursuit policy since 2018, which allows officers to chase cars at their own discretion.

"Someone that doesn't want to be caught, they are going to run, and it's our obligation to chase them at that point," Houston Police Officers' Union President Douglas Griffith said.

Under the policy, the officer has to weigh the need to chase the suspect versus the risk of putting the public in danger.

"A lot of times, it will depend on what you are chasing them for," Griffith said. "If it's someone that was speeding, and that's all they have on them, it's less of a detriment to the community to chase them."

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