HOUSTON – The Houston Police Department announced Friday that the PIT, or Pursuit Intervention Technique, maneuver, which is used by several departments across the country to help end chases, will be taught to select officers.
Police Chief Art Acevedo, along with police commanders, held a demonstration at the HPD Training Academy on Aldine Westfield Road.
1. HPD decided to teach the new maneuver for safety reasons
Acevedo said from Jan. 1, 2012, to October 2017, HPD has engaged in 4,831 police chases. While most end safely, he said, 30 percent of them end in crashes. He said he hopes this training will help give officer the tools to keep criminals accountable and safely pursue them.
2. PIT aims to safely stop vehicle being pursued
If done right, the police car is supposed to gently tap the rear of the pursued car in order to disrupt that car's traction. The pursued car is then supposed to spin to the side and make a complete stop. Officers, ideally, would then be able to take the driver into custody.
3. PIT is supposed to help reduce crime, Acevedo said
Acevedo said that while other stations have a no-pursuit policy, he believes pursuing criminals is necessary to help deter crime.
"To the crooks out there that like to run from the police, especially if you're on your own wheels, I got news for you: We now added another tool to bring you to justice," Acevedo said. "So, do yourself a favor. Pull over, surrender (and) face the consequences, because I guarantee you (that) if you kill someone -- innocents, bystanders -- in a pursuit, we are going to push really hard to charge you with murder."
4. It's a 10-hour training, and not everyone will learn it
Officers will be chosen or recommended by their superiors to take the 10-hour training. Training starts next week.
"It's really important for us -- the safety of this community," Acevedo said. "That's why we're starting the PIT. The PIT is a very gentle maneuver. When you see it displayed here, in most of the vehicles, once the vehicle spins out, the gas valve engine actually chokes out the car. The engine goes out, if it works the way it's supposed to work for that specific vehicle."
HPD Chief Art Acevedo and commanders are explaining modifications to assist in vehicle pursuits at the HPD Training Academy. FULL STORY: https://www.click2houston.com/news/houston-police-demonstrate-maneuver-to-help-officers-during-chasesPosted by KPRC2 Rose-Ann Aragon on Friday, November 17, 2017