HOUSTON, TX – A dramatic police pursuit took a fiery turn in southwest Houston as authorities chased down a suspect accused of brandishing a firearm at individuals. Video footage captured the moment the suspect’s vehicle became engulfed in flames on the I-69 Southwest Freeway near Westpark Drive.
The high-speed chase unfolded shortly after Houston Police Chief Troy Finner announced a shift in the department’s pursuit policy, aiming to initiate fewer chases. The pursuit commenced around 6:45 p.m. near the Westheimer Road exit on I-69 when officers attempted to stop the erratic driver who had reportedly pointed a gun at people.
Refusing to yield to law enforcement, the suspect led officers on a pursuit. It was later discovered that the car the suspect was driving had been reported stolen in Dallas. During the pursuit, the suspect collided with an innocent woman’s car, fortunately leaving her unharmed.
The chase ultimately reached its conclusion when the suspect crashed into a pole, causing his vehicle to burst into flames. Officers had to break the windows to rescue him from the fiery wreck. As a result of the crash, the suspect sustained a broken leg.
This incident follows recent changes in the Houston Police Department’s pursuit policy, which was revised after a sergeant’s mother tragically lost her life in a collision involving a fleeing suspect. Houston Police Chief Finner emphasized that officers are now initiating significantly fewer chases due to the new policy. He highlighted the need to strike a balance between pursuing violent individuals responsible for crimes and ensuring public safety. Finner also noted that there has been a notable 40% decrease in pursuits in the past 30 days since the policy was implemented.