HOUSTON (AP) — A Houston police officer injured in a police helicopter crash that killed another officer was in serious condition Sunday at Memorial Hermann Texas Medical Center, according to spokesperson Natasha Barrett.
Chase Cormier, 35, was upgraded from critical condition following surgery after the early Saturday morning crash that police said caused fatal injuries to Officer Jason Knox, 35, the son of Houston City Council Member Mike Knox.
Mike Knox, in a statement released Sunday, expressed gratitude for support he said his family had received from the city.
“We celebrate all Jason embodied as a committed HPD officer and pilot who fully embraced his job and we celebrate Jason as he was outside of his work — a devoted husband, a loving father and our only son whom we cherished every day,” Knox wrote.
“We appreciate the privacy you have given us and continue to provide as we walk this road we would never wish for anyone, but that we now accept as ours,” according to the statement.
The helicopter was part of a search for bodies in a nearby bayou, which was prompted by a tip that Police Chief Art Acevedo has said was “probably a bogus call — we don’t know.”
Police spokesman Kese Smith said Sunday that no bodies have been found and police were still investigating whether the helicopter was struck by gunfire.
Six people were arrested in connection with gunfire in the area about an hour after the crash, according to Acevedo.
The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the cause of the crash, along with a homicide investigation by Houston police.