Police shoot man after toddler’s escape from stolen car

Local police are crediting a father’s quick thinking for helping them quickly end a car chase in Houston on Saturday afternoon. The chase began around 12:21 p.m. as a stolen pickup truck was driven…

Police shoot man after toddler's escape from stolen car

Local police are crediting a father’s quick thinking for helping them quickly end a car chase in Houston on Saturday afternoon.

The chase began around 12:21 p.m. as a stolen pickup truck was driven away from an officer who was attempting to arrest the driver, Houston Police Officer Leland Elliott said.

The pursuit ended when the pickup driver exited his vehicle and took the passenger seat of a car a pedestrian was standing in front of, Elliott said.

The driver then drove that car into a busy intersection near Memorial Park, where he made a right turn into a home and parked in a backyard, Elliott said. The driver, identified as Derek Wayne Filshoff, 30, then opened the passenger door and tried to leave with a 2-month-old child in his arms, Elliott said.

“(Filshoff) then locked his hands around the child’s neck as if he was choking the child, leading the officer who was working as a reserve Deputy for the sheriff’s office to fire several shots at Filshoff,” said Houston Constable Lt. Edgar Nunez, in a news release. “Thankfully, the child was able to escape.”

Police did not say what Filshoff was trying to do with the child or why he wanted to leave the vehicle. Two other children were in the pickup, whose license had been reported stolen.

Elliott, of the Houston Police Department, praised the deputy’s decision to open fire at Filshoff.

“The fact that he immediately allowed the child to exit the vehicle and did not yield to the officer in his position of authority… I think speaks volumes,” Elliott said.

Authorities then detained Filshoff.

A witness interviewed by KTRK after the chase was over said that she felt police acted appropriately.

“He wasn’t attacking the cops. He never tried to run them over. If they were like (reacting) in a bad way, I think that he probably should have put his hands up like he was going to surrender like he was supposed to,” she said.

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