Duson Police have released the dash cam video from a December pursuit of an allegedly stolen car that ended in a major crash and several people injured.
Duson Police's pursuit policy states that an officer should consider if starting, or continuing, a pursuit is more dangerous to the public than allowing the suspect to remain at large. To read the full policy, click here.
DPD has completed their review and say no policy violations were found, however the policy itself is under review, Chief Kip Judice tells KATC.
The review is being done by a panel of area law enforcement officials and two civilians. This committee will make suggestions to Judice on modifications to the policy. This process is expected to conclude by the end of January.
KATC reached out to Lafayette Police for the number of people who were injured and how serious their injuries were. According to LPD, a total of 8 people reported injuries as a result of the crash and 7 were transported to the hospital. Three of the injured had severe injuries, two were reported to have moderate injuries, and three had minor.
On December 2, 2021, an officer started the chase on I-10 of a vehicle that had been reported stolen, then pursued it for several miles and off the Interstate and into Lafayette, first down Ambassador Caffery Parkway and then onto Bertrand Drive. Five vehicles were involved in the crash on Bertrand, with multiple people sent to the hospital with injuries.
Duson Police say a criminal report charging the juvenile driver of the allegedly stolen vehicle with illegal possession of stolen property (car) and seven counts of criminal negligent injuring has been forwarded to the District Attorney’s Office. The juvenile left the hospital in Lafayette prior to Duson Police Officers arrival so the arrest is pending at this time.
The car being driven by the juvenile, a 2013 Nissan Altima, was stolen on or about October 12, 2021 from Greenwell Springs, LA and was detected by Duson Police Crime Cameras as it was traveling east bound on Interstate 10, and then officers attempted to stop the stolen vehicle it fled and made numerous attempts to elude capture, ending in the crash on Bertrand Drive.
Three other occupants of the stolen car are all cooperating with law enforcement, he stated. One remains hospitalized but is expected to make a full recovery.
Judice tells KATC that it is still not known if the suspect in the pursuit was wanted on any other charges. Judice says that the car in the pursuit was stolen from an auto auction yard and that several vehicles stolen from other auto auction yards were tied to ATM robberies in LA and Texas. They have not tied the specific car or the driver to any other crimes at this point.
When asked, Judice said that he does not believe that the danger involved in this pursuit was worth the recovery of a stolen vehicle.
"The outcome with injuries to anyone is never worth the recovery of stolen property. If I knew the end result of all calls we respond to I am sure I would approach a lot of them in a different fashion. I truly pray for those who were injured so that they may recover fully."