EXCLUSIVE: DPS dep. director talks to us about deadly pursuit

Posted: Updated:
(Source; DPS) (Source; DPS)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

For the first time, we're hearing from the second in command at the DPS, who's under investigation for a deadly high-speed pursuit in late January.

That pursuit of a stolen work truck spanned the Valley, from Gilbert all the way north to the Camp Verde area.

At times, the suspect was pushing 100 miles an hour.

The chase ended in a rollover crash that killed the driver. Bradley Burton Moore, 29, was killed. Moore was an Army veteran suffering from PTSD and was reportedly suicidal.

DPS is investigating all aspects of the deadly crash, including the actions of Deputy Director Heston Silbert.

[READ MORE: DPS investigating second-in-command for off-duty chase that turned deadly]

This week, we spoke exclusively to Silbert about the events of that day.

Silbert was off-duty in his personal truck, as he began to follow closely behind the stolen work truck.

We asked him about the fact that he didn't have a light bar or siren on his car, and that it's not a certified emergency pursuit vehicle.

"I wasn't in pursuit," he said. "I was just trying to keep an eye on it."

[READ MORE: DPS IDs suspect who died after stolen truck chase ended in crash on I-17]

According to DPS pursuit policy:

  • Unmarked cars should be replaced as soon as possible.
  • Even marked units can't exceed 85 mph. 
  • And pursuits should be terminated if the criminal act doesn't justify the risk of life and property by the immediate apprehension of the suspect.

We asked Silbert if he thinks the incident went too far.

"No," he said. " I think if you listen to the tapes, this was not an excited event. Every day I come to work for the last 28 years as a police officer. I care about the community. I care about the families in this community. And I don't think I could live with myself if I didn't - on or off duty- try to protect our community because it's what I've sworn to do."
We are still waiting to get the full radio transmissions from the police helicopter and Yavapai County, where they were worried about icy road conditions as the pursuit headed farther north, 

The critical investigations review is expected to take 60 days.

[READ MORE: Girlfriend: I-17 chase suspect was Army veteran battling PTSD]

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