Watch CBS News

Full Fort Worth police chase policy obtained by the CBS News Texas I-Team

Full Fort Worth police chase policy obtained by the CBS News Texas I-Team
Full Fort Worth police chase policy obtained by the CBS News Texas I-Team 05:31

FORT WORTH - The CBS News Texas I-Team has obtained through sources the complete, unredacted vehicle pursuit policy used by the Fort Worth Police Department.

The full policy lays out, in detail, the circumstances in which officers can engage in a vehicle pursuit. These reasons were redacted from a version of policy the Fort Worth Police Department released on Monday.

Law enforcement expert Dr. Alex del Carmen, who is considered an authority on police policies, said the Fort Worth policy is "pretty consistent" with other policies across the country. The main difference, he said, is the precise detail of the Fort Worth policy. The I-Team gave the full policy to del Carmen to review. 

Del Carmen said some of the details in the Fort Worth policy could give criminals insight into the circumstances in which officers would call off a chase but added much of what Fort Worth has kept hidden would not give criminals an upper hand.

"I typically side with the public's right to know," del Carmen told the I-Team. "There are very few things, and I underscore few, that law enforcement should not disclose to the public."

The I-Team confirmed the policy through multiple sources. Due to stated safety concerns raised by the Fort Worth police chief, the I-Team is not publishing its details.

Most North Texas police departments, including Dallas police, make their pursuit policies public. 

A new report released in September by the U.S. Department of Justice called on law enforcement agencies to only start a pursuit if a violent felony crime has been committed and the suspect poses an imminent threat. While the Fort Worth policy is similar to other North Texas police policies, the I-Team found it does not fully align with the federal report's recommendations.

Fort Worth police told the I-Team the redacted policy released on Monday reflect "a careful and thorough review of the policy in conjunction with the city attorney's office and reflect our intention to release as much of the policy as we safely can."

Last fall, the city of Fort Worth filed a lawsuit to block public records requests made by CBS News Texas and other news organizations for the pursuit policy. The I-Team requested it back in July after several high-profile chases, including one that resulted in the death of Andre Craig, an innocent bystander.

The police department told the I-Team that it intends to continue with the lawsuit to keep parts of the policy private.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.