HOUSTON – The family of the person who was killed in a crash involving a Houston Police Department patrol unit Sunday afternoon has identified their loved one.
Houston police officials said the tragic incident happened around noon in the 4600 block of North Shepherd Drive near West 43rd Street in north Houston.
Family members identified the victim as 77-year-old Charles Payne.
“He had left home for church this morning, and he didn’t make it back,” his son, Kevin Payne, said.
Kevin said he never imagined Dec. 26 would be the last day he saw his father.
“I was at home, and HPD came to notify us that he was in a car wreck with a police officer,” Kevin said.
Authorities say the HPD patrol unit was traveling northbound on Shepherd Drive before crashing into Charles’ Gold Cadillac. He was behind the wheel, turning onto Thornton Drive.
KPRC2 froze the video before the crash happened to respect the family.
“I almost thought that it was going to be head-on crash,” Anthony Jones said.
Anthony Jones works at the Aqua Car Wash across the street and said he saw the crash.
“I was the one that called 911,” he said. “I was about to give the man CPR, but as I was about to give him CPR another officer pulled. I let the officer handle it instead of me.”
The impact from the crash caused officers to shut down the northbound lanes for several hours. The officer was taken to the hospital with minor injuries.
Payne’s other son, Roderick Dearborne, has questions about what happened.
“Were you in pursuit? Did you have your lights on?” he said, questioning the officer.
Houston Police and the Harris County District Attorney’s office are investigating, and detectives said they will reconstruct the crash site.
“What we are going to do here at the scene is basically freeze it. We are going to take both cars and determine exactly what speed everybody was traveling,” Chief of the Harris County Vehicular Crimes Division Sean Teare said.
Payne’s family believes speed played a role in the crash and now they want justice for their father.
“My father was turning off Shepherd onto Thornton,” Kevin said. “He couldn’t be speeding [while] turning. So, someone had to be speeding for him to be killed in an impact hit like that.”
As part of the investigation, HPD says the officer will be placed on administrative leave.