Arkansas Trooper Flipped Pregnant Woman’s Car, Now She’s Suing
In July of 2020 an Arkansas State Patrol Officer struck and flipped over the vehicle of a pregnant woman using a "pursuit intervention technique", or PIT maneuver. Now the woman who was behind the wheel is suing the State Police.
38-year-old Nicole Harper was driving on US Highway 167 in Jacksonville, Arkansas when Arkansas State Trooper Rodney Dunn went to pull her over for speeding. According to reports, TrooperDunn caught Harper driving at 84 miles per hour in a 70 mile per hour zone. Trooper Dunn then turned on his lights and sirens to pull Harper over.
Dashcam video shows Harper immediately slow down and use her blinker to merge into the far right lane. From there Harper turns on her hazard lights and further reduces her speed. After about 2 minutes, Trooper Dunn uses the PIT maneuver on Harper's vehicle, which can all be seen in the recently released dashcam video. From there, Harper's vehicle slides across multiple lanes of traffic, flips, and comes to rest against the median barricade.
The audio from the dashcam video also shows Trooper Dunn mocking Harper after the accident. Telling the pregnant woman "Well this is where you ended up" when Harper said she didn't feel safe pulling over on the side of the highway.
Harper stated that her intent was to pull off at the first exit, because the shoulders of that section of highway were very small.
In fact, what Harper did was exactly what is taught in the Arkansas State Police Driver License Study Guide. All the way down to using your hazard lights to indicate to the officer you're looking for a safe place to stop. When Harper explained this to Trooper Dunn on the dashcam video, Dunn became confrontational.
If you watch the signs in the dashcam video, you can see that Harper was nearing the exit ramp as Trooper Dunn initiated the PIT maneuver to flip her vehicle. The dangerous tactic was initiated even though Harper had followed exactly what Arkansas State Police teach drivers to do.
KLRT-TV in Little Rock uncovered 144 reports of PIT maneuvers used by Arkansas State Police in a single year. They reported that was twice the number compared to the year before.
According to a ton of reports, Trooper Dunn still has his job, and has faced no repercussions. In fact, one report says Arkansas State Police Colonel Bill Bryant issued a statement than contradicts the State Police Driver's License Study Guide in his defense of Trooper Dunn.
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