HOUSTON – A Houston Police Department helicopter crashed early Saturday morning, killing one officer and leaving the other officer severely injured, according to authorities.
The officers in the helicopter were responding to a report of bodies found in a nearby bayou, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said. The helicopter crashed into part of an apartment complex located at 17050 Imperial Valley Drive, near the Greenspoint neighborhood in north Houston.
Members of the Houston Fire Department had to cut the officers out of the wreckage, Acevedo said.
Both officers were flown to Memorial Hermann hospital in critical condition. HPD officer Jason Knox, 35, died at the hospital. HPD officer Chase Cormier, 35, sustained multiple injuries in the crash, including a broken back, his wife Brooke Cormier wrote in a Facebook post. Cormier underwent surgery Saturday.
“We are going to have a long, hard road of rehab ahead of us in hopes of getting him to walk but if anyone can get through this, it’s him,” wrote Brooke in the Facebook post.
Cormier was sworn in as a HPD officer in July 2006 and has 14 years of service with the police department. He is currently assigned to the Air & Marine Division. He’s been with the air support unit for three years. He’s been a commercial helicopter pilot for one year and three months, Acevedo said.
“We’re very hopeful that he will obviously be able to come out of that hospital but he’s got some severe injuries,” Acevedo said in a news briefing Saturday afternoon. “We need to lift up both families in prayer.”
To donate to the Cormier family, visit assisttheofficer.com.
Here are acknowledgments from Houston Mayor Turner:
Early this morning, two @houstonpolice officers were involved in a helicopter crash.— Sylvester Turner (@SylvesterTurner) May 2, 2020
Unfortunately, one officer has passed.
I ask our city to pray for both families. May God bring healing to both families while bringing comfort to our Houston Police Department family.
Here are acknowledgments from the Houston Police Officer’s Union:
Please pray for Senior Police Officer Chase Cormier. He was severely injured, this morning, when his HPD helicopter went down in north Houston. Chase was life flighted and underwent surgery this morning. More details will follow as updates are available. (1 of 2) pic.twitter.com/D074lrMCyT— Houston Police Officers' Union (@HPOUTX) May 2, 2020
Here’s what we know about the crash: