VIDEO: Trooper Disciplined For Chasing Down Suspect Who Intentionally Rammed Her

A Florida trooper who successfully chased and caught a man who rammed her patrol car got a naughty letter for her work.

Miami-Dade County, FL – A Florida Highway Patrol trooper, who was injured when a crazed motorist intentionally rammed her patrol vehicle on the Florida Turnpike, still managed to chase down the suspect and arrest him (video below).

Despite her heroic takedown, the trooper was subsequently scolded by department administrators, the Miami Herald reported.

The incident occurred April 24, as Trooper Vanessa Franceschi was conducting a traffic stop on the shoulder of the busy roadway.

Dashcam footage showed the trooper as she returned to her patrol vehicle and got inside.

A moment later, 20-year-old Raumel Quintero slammed his Honda Civic into the back of the patrol car and sent the trooper’s vehicle lurching forward.

“Ah s--t!” Trooper Franceschi yelled.

The sound of squealing tires could be heard as Quintero shifted into reverse and ducked back into traffic.

Trooper Franceschi quickly jumped into action and initiated a pursuit.

“I just got hit,” she said over the radio. “The guy is fleeing in the car right now.”

She swiftly raced up behind him and broadcast the vehicle’s license plate as they sped down the shoulder of the road past congested lanes of traffic.

“Still fleeing,” Trooper Franceschi radioed, as the vehicles flew down an exit ramp. “He hit me hard from the rear. He reversed and took off. He’s failing to stop.”

Quintero weaved between lanes of traffic before he cut through a grassy area to avoid a traffic light, then forced his way into oncoming traffic to get back onto the Florida Turnpike, the video showed.

The crazed driver’s vehicle dove into the grass once again, as he passed two vehicles pulled onto the shoulder of the roadway.

Trooper Franceschi then asked for permission to perform a pursuit intervention technique in order to bring Quintero’s vehicle to a stop, WPEC reported.

“Let me know, I can try to PIT him here,” the trooper said over the radio.

Quintero cut across medians and blew by bumper-to-bumper traffic while traveling at speeds of up to 100 miles per hour, WPLG reported.

Minutes later, Quintero was slowed down and attempted to navigate between motorists and a guardrail, enabling the trooper to close in behind him, the video showed.

She then used her patrol vehicle to strike the rear driver’s side quarter of Quintero’s vehicle and pushed him perpendicular to the other motorists’ direction of travel and into a cement barrier.

The officers boxed him in and Trooper Franceschi approached his driver’s side window with her weapon drawn.

Another officer opened the suspect’s passenger door and yanked Quintero from the vehicle.

Quintero was arrested on charges of fleeing, leaving the scene of a crash with injuries, and aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer, the Palm Beach Post reported.

Trooper Franceschi was taken to a local hospital to be treated for back injuries sustained in the initial collision, WPLG reported.

No one else was injured during the pursuit, police said.

“That she was targeted because she is a law enforcement officer is outrageous,” Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles Executive Director Terry Rhodes told the Palm Beach Post. “We must continue to support our brave heroes by letting them know malicious attacks against law enforcement will not be tolerated in our communities.”

Three weeks after the dramatic pursuit, Florida Highway Patrol administrators required Trooper Franceschi to complete a counseling and training session to address the actions she took during her effort to apprehend Quintero, the Miami Herald reported.

After she satisfied the requirement, Lieutenant Gene Phillipson issued a memo that scolded the trooper for “improper driving tactics,” to include passing at a high rate of speed without a siren activated and driving the wrong way into traffic.

“This is to document that we discussed best practices and safety awareness concerns during your pursuit, and ensured that you understand the requirements of the policy, procedures and training regarding pursuits," Lt. Phillipson wrote. "Future violations of this nature may result in disciplinary action."

Florida Police Benevolent Association Florida Highway Patrol President Bill Smith blasted the agency for reprimanding Trooper Vanessa Franceschi, and argued that pursuits do not unfold according to a set of predetermined rules.

"We're getting to a point now where you're going to hamper or hinder a trooper's ability for them to effectively do their job," Smith told the Miami Herald. “[She conducted] the most perfect chase you can have unless the guy pulls over and gives it up."

You can watch dashcam footage of the pursuit in the video below:

Comments (35)
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Bigyoda20
Bigyoda20

I was a deputy sheriff. It was policy in my department that any time we were operating over the speed limit in response to an incident, you had to employ lights AND siren. It is both a safety and CYA issue in case you hit someone. Many may not like it but just like it is every officer’s job to enforce ALL laws, not just the ones people think are important, it is the Lt’s and admin’s job to review officers’ performance and enforce department policies/safety protocols. She went without siren for half that pursuit. Yes the outcome was positive but that doesn’t mean you overlook safety issues. Her performance was reviewed and they took corrective action, i.e. some training and a warning. It’s not like she was fired or even suspended. You can’t let officers do as they please, as long as the result was positive because eventually the result will be disastrous. For Christ’s sake, Stop acting like they strung her up.

FpsK9Handler
FpsK9Handler

Oops! I was a little drunk last night! My apologies..

NMPETITT
NMPETITT

Are you kidding me, what did they want her to do? How, would they have responded in this particular situation? I think it was a job well done, especially while injured. And, they wonder why police officers are afraid to do their jobs. Damned if they do, damned if they dont!

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

Should have been more serious discipline. She put a lot of people at risk. Not sure why this article is so sure that the initial rear ending was intentional. My school bus rearended a car once. It wasn't intentional. Another school bus rear ended the vehicle of a close relative of mine once. The same relative rear ended a car on the freeway once. It wasn't intentional. I got rear ended in 2014. It wasn't intentional. Just because a car happens to be a police vehicle doesn't mean that anyone who hits it, does so intentionally.

Pat1978
Pat1978

Maybe because he fled dips--t.

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

People flee accidents caused by their own negligence all the time, so that doesn't really do anything to show intention with respect to the initial collision. Also, no need for the vulgarity.

TarnishedCopper
TarnishedCopper

What a crock of crap! I hope her benevolent association appeals her reprimand. Actually if other officers had taken-up the chase she would have been better off to drop out, but we all know what adrenaline does to a person under those circumstances. What is wrong with people thinking they can get away with such stupidness nowadays?

Rockman04
Rockman04

Again we have Admin sitting in their offices who probably never were involved in anything like this what a joke she did what she had to do as she was instructed to do change the sop if it offended you but as a 30 year veteran the Lieutenant is a pussy.

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

"According to arrest report, the driver said he intentionally hit the Trooper’s vehicle." Roll tape.

Steve1
Steve1

The LT. should be demoted, and the officer did her job right!

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

"Again we have Admin sitting in their offices who probably never were involved in anything like this" What getting rearended? The Admins may well have been rearended. As far as the rest of it, the point the Admins are making is that she shouldn't have gotten herself involved the way she did. It violates the rules of engagement that have been put in place for the safety of the public.

bronx163
bronx163

Her Lt. Is just one giant 2 legged lib piece of shit who should resign. This trooper and a female did an awesome job driving and using the radio. This trooper should be commended not pissed on to make the black lives matter and libs who run florida state police.

Policing in 21 century is done.

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

bronx163: are you saying that she drives pretty well for a woman? Because that is what it sounds like.

HopeB
HopeB

I am a woman and women drive like sh**. I see them doing their makeup, fixing their hair, flopping around like they're in a club, yacking on a cell phone, etc. This officer wasn't doing ANY of those things, so yeah, she's a pretty good driver.

As far as this officer. I hate that I can't defend her actions here. I normally find myself defending the actions of LEOs but this officer reacted badly. She got rear-ended and with emotions flying from that, she wasn't able to keep a cool head. She put innocent civilian's in harms way with her reactions.

Maybe a week ago, we had a similar situation here. Except the officer, rather than engage any further into a high speed pursuit just used the license plate info and grabbed the guy later at his home.

ServedProudly
ServedProudly

You can't write rules for what happens in a fast chase, the only thing you can do is evaluate it on the overall circumstances that was presented to the officer at that instantaneous moment. The bad guy writes the rules as he goes. She did exactly what she needed to do to apprehend someone who may have been trying to do great bodily harm to her (Felony). The only issue I had during the whole thing is after the stop she she stuck her gun in the cracked open door which could have allowed the bad guy to take control of her weapon, but even with that, she quickly realized her mistake and pulled the gun back out. Job well done trooper.

bronx163
bronx163

Burgers Allday

What I’m saying she worked that wheel like any guy cop. She maned up took charge didn’t panic to the battle to this mf perp. She did an amazing job and handled Radio great too. Giving play by play as she was engaged and pumped up with adreline.

RetFD
RetFD

Good policies permit discretion. If the Lt. insist on nitpicking her pursuit, he could whisper to her about being inconsistent in her use of the siren, but the proof of her overall performance is in the apprehension. Sad that no good deed goes unpunished. Rather than praise her pit maneuver and a number of well executed strategies, he focuses on policy minutiae to characterize the pursuit? Sad. As if there isn't enough going on to diminish morale.

No. 26-35
kgolfinghawaii
kgolfinghawaii

Bigyoda20 and do you know why she kept turning off her siren? Because she was passing on the right and didn't want people pulling to the right and getting hit. Pretty smart move really. When you got on the freeway code 3, did you turn off your lights and siren until you were in the number one lane? If you didn't bet you caused a lot of issues on the freeway and even slowed yourself down.

bronx163
bronx163

kgolfinghawaii Your dead on right. This FL. Trooper Lt. Is a retard and should wake up commend and apologize to this Amazing Trooper and Her GREAT job apprehending this piece of shit that hit her patrol car. Hope Trooper is ok. They never did say if she was injured from rear impact after the adrenaline Wore off.

Hawk3699
Hawk3699

Sounds like the LT forgot what the streets are all about. That pursuit was by the book. I've been involved a great many puruits in my career; she did it right.

Mikey397
Mikey397

kgolfinghawaii - my feeling as well. Siren on, most citizens bail right. I commend her for her great job. I figured that she would get reprimanded for not having her hat on when she got out to make apprehension. LOL

TheMoneyShot
TheMoneyShot

Nice team work.