GREENSBORO, N.C. — Police say a man remains in critical condition after he attacked a Greensboro police officer on Tuesday night.
The incident happened just before 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Hamptons at Country Park apartment complex at 4509 Lawndale Drive.
According to police, the officer was responding to a 911 call about the welfare of a 2-year-old child at the apartment complex. Police say they were concerned about the father of the child, Tommy Campbell, 34, who they say has mental health issues.
Police said on Tuesday evening, the suspect’s wife, Kellie Campbell, called 911 and said she received a call from her husband on her way home from work. During that conversation, Tommy Campbell indicated he was going to harm their 2-year-old child.
As dispatchers worked to get officers to the scene, Mrs. Campbell repeatedly said her husband had never acted this way before.
She also explained he had just been to the doctor earlier Tuesday to be treated for recent mood swings. She said he’d stopped taking medication for a mental illness about a week ago and had been acting strangely since Monday.
Mrs. Campbell told dispatchers her husband was diagnosed ten years ago and always took his medication, but had recently decided to stop taking the medication with God’s help.
“Me and my husband are pastors,” said Mrs. Campbell to dispatchers. “Some of the things he was saying, he was quoting scripture about whenever Abraham sacrificed Issac to God, and that’s why I’m afraid.”
She said her husband was home alone with their two-year-old son.
Police said Tommy Campbell has a history of mental health issues and is on medication, but according to police, he never had any incidents prior to yesterday. Kellie Campbell said he was off his medicine for a week and had been “acting irrationally” since Monday.
Following a second 911 call from a neighbor at the same apartment complex, officers responded to do a welfare check on the child. That neighbor told police she spotted Campbell’s dog loose in the neighborhood. When the neighbor attempted to take the dog back to the Campbell’s home, Tommy Campbell assaulted her.
The neighbor was in tears, telling dispatchers Campbell hit her in the head and face.
“My neighbor just put his hands on me and pushed me into the wall,” she cried.
Multiple officers were dispatched to the scene. Officer T.L. Simpson was the first to arrive, about the same time as Mrs. Campbell. Police say they talked briefly in the parking lot and decided to go into the apartment, fearing for the child’s life.
Inside the apartment, Investigators say Mrs. Campbell got her child to safety as Officer Simpson attempted to “engage” Mr. Campbell, who was apparently standing near the door talking incoherently.
That’s when police believe Mr. Campbell attacked Officer Simpson, pushing and hitting her, following her outside as he continued to assault her.
“Mr Campbell’s assault was both violent and relentless,” said Chief Dwight Crotts in a news conference Wednesday morning. “At some point in time, Officer Simpson ended up on the ground underneath Mr. Campbell. She discharged her weapon multiple times.”
Neighbor Deon Williams said their neighborhood is usually very quiet, and she was shocked to see all of the police cars Tuesday night.
“I do think that was kinda brave because she acted,” Williams said of Officer Simpson. “She felt like someone needed to do something right then and there so she was just doing her job.”
Officer Simpson was treated for concussion-like symptoms and released from the hospital overnight.
Tommy Campbell, Jr. is still in the hospital in critical condition.
The boy was unharmed.