Pender Correctional Officer Doesn’t Wrestle With Decision to Aid Trooper

Correctional Officer Joshua Clark, white male with glasses and brown beard.
Monday, December 9, 2019 - 9:37am

Pender Correctional Institution Officer Joshua Clark was stuck in traffic because of an accident when he noticed two men wrestling in a ditch and a State Highway Patrol cruiser on the shoulder.

One of the wrestlers wore a badge and a gun, so Clark entered into the fray to help out-of-uniform trooper C.J. Cross.

“I didn’t think about anything. I just jumped into action,” said Clark, who has been on the job for more than 2 years and said he’d like to make it his career. “It didn’t matter if it was an officer or not. My first duty is to keep the public safe in or out of prison. It wasn’t in me to leave the guy alone. I was here to help.

“Another gentleman and a female stopped to help. The guy was a big dude and was fighting and kicking. Others were standing there videotaping it with their phones. I used techniques we learned in defensive training. I got control of his wrists and was able to cuff him and get control. Eventually the four of us got on top of him.”

Clark later learned the man who was charged with resisting arrest was impaired and apparently caused the Dec. 4 crash, then had been aggressive with another driver involved in the accident.

Multiple charges were issued against the impaired driver, but none of the others were hurt in the confrontation.

Clark said he was on the way home from work that day and it was the first time he had to do something like this as a correctional officer. 

Pender Correctional Warden Bryan Wells said Clark is a good officer and wasn’t surprised he stopped to assist a law enforcement officer.

“I’m proud we’re out there helping our law enforcement partners on the other side of the street. CO Clark told me there was no question the only thing he could do was help,” Warden Wells said.

Jerry Higgins