After James Harper, an unarmed kidnapping suspect, was killed by a police officer in July 2012, police Chief David Brown committed to reforming the way his department would chase suspects on foot. Brian Rowden, the officer who shot Harper, had ended up chasing Harper alone after Harper and three other suspects in the kidnapping scattered in different directions. Exhausted, Rowden ended up in a fight with Harper, during which, the officer said, Harper threatened his life. Rowden said Harper reached his pocket, for what Rowden thought was a gun, so Rowden shot Harper twice. Harper did not have a gun.
Dallas Police Department
Changes to the policy made after Harper's death included officers being directed to chase only one suspect should multiple suspects head in different directions, for officers to stop pursuit if they became too exhausted to arrest a suspect after the suspect was caught and for officers not to chase a known suspect. If officers knew the suspects identity, he or she could easily be caught later, the thinking went. Monday afternoon, Brown will notify the City Council's public safety committee of DPD's rolling back some of the changes.More »