PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS, Ark. — A lawsuit filed against the Arkansas State Police has reached a settlement after a deputy used a PIT (Precision Immobilization Technique) maneuver in July 2020 and flipped a woman's car during a traffic stop.
Senior Corporal Rodney Dunn reportedly observed Harper going 14 miles over the speed limit and initiated the traffic stop along US Highway 67/167.
Janice Harper, who was two months pregnant at the time, said that she had her hazard lights on and couldn't safely find a place to pull over due to concrete walls along the highway.
Two minutes later, Dunn used a PIT maneuver and flipped her car, a tactic used by law enforcement to hit a fleeing vehicle and cause it to spin and end a chase.
According to Harper's lawyers, "every one of the trooper’s superiors determined the situation reflected a violation of the Arkansas State Police policy related to the PIT maneuver."
The lawsuit, filed in May of 2021, claimed that Dunn had "negligently performed" the PIT maneuver during his attempt to pull her over for speeding.
According to the Arkansas State Police's driver's license study guide, a person should turn on their hazard lights to tell police "you are seeking a safe place to stop."
The primary goal of the lawsuit, her lawyers said, was to update the policies regarding PIT maneuvers along with additional training.
“While Mrs. Harper will undoubtedly need time to recover from the psychological trauma she suffered after the PIT maneuver in question, she is excited to close this chapter of her life and focus more on her family,” attorney Andrew Norwood said.
(Editor's Note: The attached video is a report from June 2021 when the lawsuit was first announced.)