Arkansas woman suing police after brief chase ends with her car flipped on its top

WATCH: Video shows moment Arkansas state trooper flips pregnant woman's car.

6/10/2021 9:20:00 AM

WATCH: Video shows moment Arkansas state trooper flips pregnant woman's car.

Motorist Nicole Harper was two months pregnant and believed the crash had killed her unborn baby.

ByDavid K. LiA pregnant Arkansas woman's car was flipped on its top by a pursuing state trooper who accused the motorist of not pulling over fast enough, according to video of the brief chase that's being used in her lawsuit.Nicole Harper, 38, went to bed on July 9, believing her unborn child had died in the crash on U.S. Highway 167 in Jacksonville, Arkansas, her lawyer Andrew Norwood said.

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"She cried herself to sleep," Norwood told NBC News on Wednesday.Harper was going 84 mph in a 70-mph zone when trooper Rodney Dunn flashed turned on his siren and flashed lights for her to pull over, according to her lawsuit filed last month in Pulaski County Circuit Court.

Dashcam video, obtained by Harper's legal team, appeared to show her slowing, activating her blinkers and changing lanes to the right, so she could eventually pull over, Norwood said.But on the stretch of southbound U.S. 167, the shoulders are narrow and Harper wanted to pull over safely at an exit, the motorist has claimed.

"It's essentially a bowling alley with bumpers on both sides," Norwood said."There's nowhere to go; you're boxed in by concrete barriers on both sides."The pursuit was 2 minutes and 7 seconds long when the trooper tapped the back of Harper's car in a"pursuit intervention technique," more commonly known as a"PIT maneuver," the lawsuit said.

The tap caused Harper's car to suddenly veer left and out of the dashcam's view. The trooper immediately did a 180 and circled back to see the red SUV on its top, footage showed.The trooper's action"constituted a reckless attempt to engage in conduct that created substantial risk of physical injury," Harper's civil complaint said.

In the video, the trooper approached Harper's flipped car and as he helped her out of the wreckage asked:"Why didn't you stop?""Because I didn't feel like it was safe," she answered"Well this is where you ended up," the trooper responded."Ma'am you got to pull over."

TheArkansas drivers license manual urgesmotorists to pull"to the nearest/safest spot out of the traffic lane" when police are exercising a pullover.In the emergency room that night, a doctor told the two-months pregnant Harper that a fetal heartbeat could not be detected and she believed the baby had died, Norwood said.

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But an exam by her OB-GYN the next morning did pick up the heartbeat, and Harper's daughter was born in February.In addition to speeding, Harper is being charged with failing to yield to an emergency vehicle, which carries a maximum penalty of a $400 fine.

Read more: NBC News »

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Stopping people for speeding should not even be something on which police waste their time, much less this violence. Pay up taxpayers! Blue lives matter. What a joke. These cops are power hungry. this is insane. The cop should be prosecuted for attempted murder I support the police, but not in this instance. He should have at least waited, following her until they reached an exit. ..

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