A Fort Worth police officer has been removed from the SWAT team and a second officer has been stripped of his badge and gun while the police department investigates their roles in a highly-publicized car chase last Wednesday, according to multiple law enforcement sources.
The chase dragged on for about two hours until a SWAT member rammed the car in Arlington along Interstate 30 near Six Flags Over Texas to end the pursuit.
Officer Dennis Alice was driving an armored vehicle, known as a BearCat, when he performed a "PIT maneuver," or a Precision Immobililzation Technique, to force the driver's vehicle into a spin to end the pursuit.
Fort Worth Police Department policy does not allow officers to do PIT maneuvers and the move was not authorized, sources said.
Supervisors removed Alice from the SWAT team, but he remains on active duty in patrol amid an internal investigation.
A second SWAT officer, Brian Gentry, was removed from active duty and stripped of his gun and badge while the police department investigates whether he used excessive force against driver being pursued.
On video at the end of the chase, Gentry appears to strike the driver, 42-year-old Joe Gonzales, with the butt end of a weapon.
Sources familiar with the investigation said it wasn't a rifle but rather a tear gas launcher.
Gentry denies assaulting the driver and claims Gonzales was off balance as he crawled out through a back window of the car and grabbed onto the launcher, forcing the officer to struggle with him to regain control of the weapon, the sources said.
Gonzales was treated by paramedics at the scene for injuries to his face and was taken to a hospital.
Police said they found a sizable amount of methamphetamine in his car.
The department is not confirming the action against the officers but did issue a statement to NBC 5 News.
"Fort Worth police officers have the best of intentions and utmost consideration for the public's safety while involved in a fluid situation such as a vehicle pursuit," the statement said. "Equally important are the policies and procedures that govern the actions of departmental personnel."