ALVARADO, Texas - The Texas Rangers are investigating a police chase that went through three counties and led to an officer opening fire on the suspect.
Alvarado police say an officer went to investigate a pickup that was in a parking lot where all the businesses were closed Monday morning. The driver sped away when he saw police. Police say the driver tried to escape twice and rammed two police cars during the chase.
Police say the chase went for 70 miles through several counties at 100 mph.
“The pursuit was extremely dangerous,” said Alvarado Police Chief Brand Anderson. “Lucky none of our officers were injured.”
People in the rural neighborhood between Maypearl and Waxahachie were awakened by screeching tires, police sirens and three gun shots.
"You could hear them coming down here and hit this turn,” said witness Greg Martin. “You could hear him slide across the turn and come down here."
Alvarado police say they chased 26-year-old Tommy Berry until they pinned his white Chevy pickup up against a pipe fence.
"The smoke was coming down the street,” Martin said. “Could smell it. Opened my window to see and smelled the burnt rubber."
"He was trying to escape again to the point that he almost burned the rubber off the back tires of his truck until he passed out from being shot,” explained Chief Anderson.
Police say Berry was shot after hitting a police car head on as he turned around in someone's yard. That officer fired into the passenger side door as the pickup went by him
Police say Berry's wife was in the passenger's side but wasn't hurt. She told police Berry ran because he had outstanding warrants.
"We recovered an air soft pistol that looked like a real gun. No markings to tell us otherwise. It was not involved in the incident,” said Chief Anderson.
Officers also found drug paraphernalia in Berry's pickup.