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TCSO pursuit policy after fatal crash

Posted at 6:22 PM, Oct 21, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-21 20:46:21-04

TULSA, Okla. — A chase involving Tulsa County Sheriff's deputies ended with a deadly crash on Friday.

The collision killed an innocent man, 48-year-old William Houseman.

The TCSO policy on pursuits shows deputies will initiate a chase depending on the crime they're investigating.

The Tulsa County Sheriff's office says the truck, in this case, had been reported stolen and that Tulsa Police were looking for the driver.

TCSO policy states:

"Deputies may initiate a vehicle pursuit when they have reason to believe a felony or serious misdemeanor has occurred and the suspect clearly exhibits the intention of avoiding arrest by using a vehicle to flee or refusing to stop their vehicle."

As for when deputies should call off a pursuit, the policy says deputies will continuously monitor the situation and states:

" If the danger outweighs the benefits of apprehension, the deputy or supervisor will immediately terminate the pursuit."

In this case, the Sheriff's Office tells us shortly after 9 PM Friday deputies found a truck that had been reported as stolen and attempted to pull the driver over.

During the stop, deputies say the driver, Michael Johnson, took off.

Deputies followed Johnson for less than a mile down 129th east avenue from Admiral to 11th where they say he ran the light hitting and killing Houseman.

The Tulsa Police traffic unit is now investigating the crash.

Per standard TCSO policy--the Sheriff's Office will submit the pursuit for review to the internal review board to see if policy was followed.

The Tulsa County Sheriff's Office says Johnson was most likely running because of his lengthy criminal history.

He has 5 felony convictions out of Tulsa county and1 felony conviction out of Rogers.

Those convictions range from assault with a deadly weapon to assault and battery as well as possession and driving with a suspended license.

There are also several misdemeanor charges and convictions out of Tulsa, Mayes, Osage and Wagoner counties.

Johnson was booked on multiple complaints, including first-degree murder, kidnapping, eluding, and resisting arrest.

He's also been on a suspended sentence for his 3rd DUI which is a felony.

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