June 18, 2013
Jared and Rose Cleerdin found themselves right in the middle of a shootout at what should have been a routine DWI checkpoint. Days after the dramatic shootout in Brunswick County, they are still shaken by what they saw.
“Every cop turned around and started unloading like super trigger happy as if their training was coming into full effect and they were being able to utilize it,” said Cleerdin. “Everybody was just blasting this car to pieces. It was absolutely terrifying.”
They were stunned with what was happening, as officers reportedly shot dozens of rounds – in the direction on-coming traffic.
“Cops are shooting from the front of the car, back into the rest of the on-coming traffic to the check point, into the rest of the innocent civilians down the road,” said Cleerdin.
Cleerdin says he believes the officers acted with no regard for public safety.
“It was way beyond reckless,” said Cleerdin. “I couldn’t believe it. These are professional people, professional officers, and they’re training, they’re highly trained and they’re not supposed to do stuff like that.”
Officials with the sheriff’s office are keeping tight lipped about the incident. No one will tell us who shot the two suspects, or what even led up to the shooting.
“I could understand why they wouldn’t come out with an explanation as to what happened after seeing what we saw,” said Cleerdin. “It looked like every officer there did not follow protocol in any way, shape, or form.”
After surviving such a scary moment, both Jared and Rose are thankful to spend this Father’s Day with their girl Chloe.
“We’re so lucky and so happy that our child still has parents,” said Cleerdin. “That’s how we feel. We feel like we were inches from death.”
Seven officers – four from Brunswick and three from New Hanover – are on administrative duty. The SBI is investigating the incident.