FRISCO, Texas – Frisco police have apologized to an Arkansas family after assuming they were driving a stolen vehicle and conducting a ‘high risk’ traffic stop, according to a news release.
The incident happened Sunday, July 23rd on the Dallas North Tollway.
An officer saw the family’s black Dodge Charger with an out-of-state license leaving a hotel. The family was reportedly heading to a tournament in Grapevine, Texas.
Due to a recent influx of burglaries and vehicle thefts involving Dodge Chargers, the officer decided to run the plate of the vehicle, according to Frisco PD.
The officer mistakenly entered the license plate number out of Arizona and the registration came back as “incomplete.”
Police said the officer assumed the vehicle may have been stolen and pulled over the Dodge on Dallas North Tollway before calling for backup.
When more police arrived, they closed down the southbound lanes of the roadway. The driver and a backseat passenger were ordered to step out of the vehicle, officials said.
A sergeant later arrived and realized a mistake was made and told the officers to “stand down.”
“We made a mistake. Our department will not hide from its mistakes. Instead, we will learn from them,” said Frisco Police Chief David Shilson in a statement. “The officer involved quickly accepted responsibility for what happened, which speaks to integrity. I’ve spoken with the family. I empathize with them and completely understand why they’re upset.”
An incident review was conducted shortly after the traffic stop to help “prevent this from happening in the future,” according to Frisco PD.
“I apologized on behalf of our department and assured them that we will hold ourselves accountable and provide transparency through the process,” Chief Shilson said.
An investigation into the incident continues.