Truck Driver To the Rescue, Police Officer Saved

by Jana Ritter - Published: 5/20/2014

Tuck driver Kenneth Campbell delivers food for Kroger and on Sunday, he became a super hero after his bravery and quick thinking saved a police officer’s life. He was delivering food to the Kroger on Kirby Parkway and Poplar in Memphis, when he saw something strange occurring behind the store.

Black driver

“I saw a white, male body laying in the lane that we use to get to the dock,” Campbell said. “It was pouring down rain, so I thought something happened.” He started flashing his headlights and 28-year-old Frank Sutherland jumped up from the ground then immediately started beating with his bare hands on the truck and trailer. Campbell said the man was screaming at him trying to pull the truck door open and he quickly realized he was in a dangerous situation. He called 911.

Police arriving on the scene said Sutherland had already taken off running as they were headed towards Kirby and Great Oaks Road. They said he was stumbling in the street. When an officer stopped him and tried to get him to sit down in the cruiser, the police said that Sutherland lunged at him, choked him and screamed, “‘Officer, you’re going to die tonight!’”

Campbell, who followed behind Sutherland in his truck and was still on the phone with 911, saw the escalating situation and told dispatchers to get more help. “I told them while I was on the phone they need to send more help, because this one officer…He’s not going to be able to handle him! If they would have been ten minutes longer, five minutes…I couldn’t have promised you what would have happened,” Campbell said, shaking his head. Campbell realizes now he may have saved that officer’s life, but knows how close this situation came to ending tragically.

Fortunately, the officer who was attacked did not suffer any serious injuries and the police arrested Frank Sutherland when they arrived on the scene and found him choking the first responding officer near Kirby and Great Oaks Road. Sutherland is charged with aggravated assault, public intoxication, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

Campbell is amazed that this all started when he saw Sutherland laying on the ground behind the store and his initial intention was to try and help the man, Then realizing he was under attack, his next thought was ‘Am I going to have to kill this guy?

Thankfully, he chose to do the right thing and all ended well.