VIDEO: 100+ MPH PIT Maneuver Launches Trooper's Patrol Vehicle
Fort Smith, AR – Dashcam footage captured the moment when an Arkansas State Police trooper’s patrol vehicle went airborne during a deadly high-speed chase.
The incident began at approximately 6:30 a.m. on April 10, when a U.S. Forestry Service officer spotted a truck barreling through a red light, KFSM reported.
The driver, later identified as 34-year-old Justin Battenfield, then passed through the intersection by flying down the shoulder, the Arkansas Times reported.
The U.S. Forestry Service officer pursued Battenfield southbound on U.S. Highway 71, and was soon joined by a Sebastian County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) deputy.
During the 20-mile chase, the suspect abruptly changed course and began heading northbound U.S. Highway 71, leading officers into the Witcherville community, the Arkansas Times reported.
Dashcam footage showed Battenfield swerving into oncoming traffic while barreling down the roadway.
Just before 7 a.m., the fleeing suspect turned eastbound onto Arkansas Highway 255, the Arkansas Times reported.
“Get up there and get him stopped, because he's driving on the wrong…side of the road and we need to get him stopped," a supervisor said over the radio. "I don't care if he's brake-checking you. Get this car stopped as soon as there's an opening on the highway."
Arkansas State Trooper Michael Shawn Ellis attempted to stop him using a Pursuit Intervention Technique (PIT) maneuver a moment later.
Dashcam footage showed the patrol vehicle as it pushed into the side of the suspect’s truck at speeds of over 100 miles per hour, KHBS reported.
The force of the impact immediately caused Battenfield’s truck to roll off of the roadway and onto its roof.
The patrol vehicle then launched over the top of the suspect’s pickup, which continued to roll as the trooper’s car flew through the sky, snapped a utility pole, and overturned, landing on its roof.
Battenfield was killed in the collision, KFSM reported.
Trooper Ellis, a four-year veteran-of-the-force, was rushed to a Little Rock hospital, where he was admitted for non-life threatening injuries.
He has since been released from the hospital to continue his recovery at home, according to KHBS.
The Arkansas State Police Highway Patrol Division and Criminal Investigation Division special agents are handling the ongoing investigation into the deadly collision, KATV reported.
Watch the incident unfold in the video below. Warning - Graphic Content: