Huntington Police Chief Wrestles Suspect; Neighbor Helps

By: Carrie Cline Email
By: Carrie Cline Email

UPDATE 8/14/12 @ 6 p.m.
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A police chief is typically thought of as someone behind a desk -- supervising officers. But, one local chief turned that stereotype upside down when a routine drive turned into a wrestling match with a suspect. A local resident walked up just in time to save the day.

“I observed someone I thought was potentially breaking into a house, so I turned around and pulled over to investigate that further,” Huntington Police Chief Skip Holbrook said.

Holbrook likes to ride the beat when he can and even assist other officers in the field. But, this seemingly innocent stop escalated quickly when another suspicious person pulled up in a cab.

“I opened the door a little bit and tried to talk to him and when I did, he barreled the door open and tried to run through me,” Holbrook said. “He dragged me to the sidewalk, and I dragged him back. And we were up, down and all around, and I was finally able to subdue him on the ground."

Former Huntington City Councilman Tom McCallister was there to offer some help.

“I stopped in the middle of the road and asked if he needed any help and he said, 'Yeah, would you please go get my handcuffs,' " McCallister said.

Holbrook said, “I needed assistance, and he obviously didn't hesitate to provide that assistance."

Holbrook was so thankful that he surprised McCallister at Monday night's City Council meeting.

“On behalf of the police department and a very grateful police chief, I want to thank you,” Holbrook said during his presentation to McCallister.

“It's not everyday you see the chief on top of some guy in the middle of the street,” McCallister said.

It was a turn of events for both men that deepened their sense of respect.

That suspect was arrested and charged with battery.

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Huntington Police Chief Skip Holbrook awarded a citizen with a plaque Monday night for his heroics.

Chief Holbrook said he was driving through the 200-block of 6th Ave. last week when he saw some suspicious activity.

Holbrook stopped to investigate the activity when another person pulled up in a cab. Holbrook started a conversation with the person that got out of the cab but he became belligerent and started fighting with the Chief.

While the two were wrestling a former city councilman, Tom McCallister, walked up and offered to help subdue the suspect. McCallister walked to Holbrook's car, got his handcuffs and helped to detain the person.

The man was eventually arrested.

McCallister was honored by Chief Holbrook during a council meeting Monday night.

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