The Corpus Christi Police Department released Wednesday a short list of things you might want to know about their upcoming "Stealth Car" traffic safety effort.
City Council recently passed an ordinance to allow the CCPD to utilize unmarked vehicles, or "Stealth Cars," to handle traffic cases. The ordinance is patterned after a strategy used in San Antonio for the past eight years.
According to the CCPD:
- Stealth Car has numerous red and blue flashing lights but does not have a light bar on the roof.
- Stealth Car does not display POLICE decals or markings on the body of the car.
- Stealth Car will be deployed only during daytime/daylight hours.
- Stealth Car is operated by an Officer wearing a complete CCPD Police Uniform.
- Stealth Car will spend time on city roadways that have documented high incidences of speed and distracted driving related crashes and fatalities.
- Stealth Car officer can tell when a violator continues to travel in an effort to find a safe location for the officer to make contact. We appreciate a safe location for the stop.
A week ago, CCPD Chief Mike Markle addressed some concerns about the "Stealth Car" ordinance. For instance, a driver getting pulled over after hours in a rural area, unsure of their safety when being stopped by an unmarked unit.
Markle said he will start a public service campaign to educate drivers on how to handle being stopped by an unmarked unit. He said he has good reason to begin a traffic enforcement campaign using both marked and unmarked patrol units.
"We're at 21 fatalities for the year as compared to 11 or 12 last year, this year to date," Markle said. "So that's a big number. That's a big jump. A lot of it has to do with speed."
So if you do get pulled over by an unmarked unit, police say you can proceed to a well-lit or populated area before stopping.