Fort Worth police release edited video of incident where officer shot alleged car thief
On Wednesday, the Fort Worth Police Department released edited body camera and aerial video footage, as well as a 911 call, of an incident where an officer shot an alleged car thief after a chase.
The video shows several law enforcement perspectives of the incident that took place at 11 p.m., Dec. 13 in the 2700 block of White Settlement Road. Fort Worth police said officers were responding to a vehicle burglary at an automotive repair shop in the area.
The video includes an audio snippet of the 911 call, where a person reported that someone had broken into several vehicles at the shop.
According to Fort Worth Police Chief Neil Noakes, the 911 caller told police officers that the suspect had taken a black Ranger Rover from the shop. Noakes also added that officers at some point began to suspect that there was also possibly a gun underneath the driver's seat of the car.
It is unclear if a gun was ever found in the car. The video does not go into detail on the alleged gun.
In the video, Noakes said officers responding to the 911 call found a vehicle nearby that matched the description and attempted to stop it, at which point a chase began.
During the chase, police said, several spike strips were deployed, resulting in several flat tires on the vehicle they were pursuing. The suspect then tried to make a U-turn and change directions from eastbound to westbound at the intersection of NW 28th Street and Chestnut Avenue, but police said the car lost control and drove into a low retaining wall.
The suspect then attempted to back the car away from the wall, but was blocked in by a police unit, officials said.
Police said officers then gave commands for the suspect to exit the vehicle but received no responses, at which point officers began to "break out the back window to get a better view into the stolen vehicle and the suspect."
The department said an officer covering the driver's side of the vehicle then fired a single round at the car, striking the suspect.
Included in the edited video released by Fort Worth Police, bodycam video from the officer who fired the single shot showed that he was several yards from the driver's side. It was unclear why the officer shot into the vehicle.
Noakes said the suspect -- identified by police as Frank Pierce, 37 -- was removed from the vehicle, provided medical aid at the scene, taken to a local hospital for treatment and is currently in stable condition.
Pierce has been charged with vehicle theft and evading arrest.
"Investigators are still in the process of collecting evidence and conducting interviews to get a better understanding of the facts and circumstances that led to the officer firing his weapon," Noakes said.
The officer, who was not identified by Fort Worth Police, was placed on "administrative reassignment" while the investigation continues.
No other details about the incident were released.