Sergeant Michael B. Webb
Kentucky State Police
Public Affairs Branch
Office (502) 782-1780
International Association of Chiefs of Police
Recognizes KSP Trooper for Heroic Rescue
(Frankfort, KY) - Kentucky State Police Trooper Craig Stalker has been named "Trooper of the Year-Southern Region" by the International Association of Chiefs of Police. A native of Salyersville, Ky., Stalker was honored for his efforts in rescuing five people from two burning cars in Johnson County on March 16, 2002.
Trooper Stalker was off duty on that date when he came upon a severe two-car crash. One of the vehicles was burning and its doors were jammed shut due to crash damage. Stalker broke out the rear window to rescue a 16-year old passenger trapped in the back seat. The 17-year old driver of the vehicle was pinned by the steering wheel. With assistance from two motorists, Stalker pried open one of the doors to pull the unconscious victim to safety seconds before the vehicle was engulfed in flames.
Three people remained trapped in the second vehicle. The driver and front passenger were incapacitated due to injuries and the third passenger was unconscious and not breathing. After assisting the driver and passenger to safety, Stalker re-entered the burning car to rescue the unconscious victim and begin CPR. Although suffering injuries to his back and shoulder, Stalker rendered aid until medical personnel arrived.
All victims of the crash survived. Stalker was later hospitalized for pneumonia caused by smoke and heat from the burning vehicles.
"This is the first time that a member of our agency has received this award," says KSP Commissioner Patrick N. Simpson. "We are all immensely proud of Trooper Stalker. His extreme dedication and selfless effort in saving lives carries on a long tradition of Kentucky State Police service to the citizens of Kentucky. On behalf of the agency, I congratulate him on the award and for a job well done."
Assigned to KSP Post 9 in Pikeville, Stalker has served as a member of the Kentucky State Police for two years.
Headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia, the International Association of Chiefs of Police is the world's oldest and largest nonprofit membership organization for police executives with more than 19,000 members in more than 100 countries. For the past 10 years, the IACP Trooper of the Year award has recognized law enforcement officers who have acted far beyond the call of duty. Its southern region includes the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas.