New Jersey

‘Officer Down': Hero Officer Calls 911 After Being Struck by Hit-and-Run Driver

Camden County Officer Joseph Mair remains in the hospital.

What to Know

  • Mair was among four Camden County police officers who helped rescue two men as flames raced through their cars after a crash on I-676.
  • The Camden officers, a Delaware River Port Authority Police officer and a group of bystanders worked through the heat of the fire April 7.
  • Mair suffered serious leg injuries when he was run over while investigating another car wreck Thursday night.

A recently honored Camden County police officer used his portable radio to call for help moments after a hit-and-run driver left him bleeding and stranded on the side of the road.

"Officer down. Officer down," Officer Joseph Mair said in 911 audio obtained by NBC10.

"Location?" the dispatcher asked.

"Mt. Ephraim and Thurman," Mair responded.

Officer Joseph Mair was checking out another car wreck late Thursday night in Camden City when the taxi, which had been involved in the crash Mair was investigating, allegedly accelerated into the cop, police said.

It was not clear exactly what happened to cause the taxi driver to begin driving and run over Mair, police said.

"Officer Mair actually went under the vehicle," Camden County police Chief Scott Thomson said. "The wheels went over the top of Officer Mair."

Mair remains at Cooper Hospital. A planned surgery had to be postponed Monday morning due to complications from his injury, according to Chief Thomson.

"From the extent of his injuries, he was not getting up and walking anywhere," Chief Thomson said. "Residents said his body was distorted."

Police are currently searching for the Good Samaritans who rushed to Mair's side after the crash, including a woman named Gail.

"It was a lot of noise. A lot of commotion," Chief Thomson said. "People came out of their homes. They saw that an officer was down and was incapacitated. Gail and a few others came over. Tried rendering aid."

Police apprehended the hit-and-run suspect who they say is a cab driver with 5-Star in Pennsauken, New Jersey. He has not yet been charged.

Joseph Mair hurt
Camden Co. Police Dept.
Camden County, New Jersey, police Officer Joseph Mair's patrol car is seen following a bad crash in which Mair was run over by a taxi.

Mair and three fellow officers, along with some bystanders, became instant heroes after body camera footage from a fiery crash on April 7 showed a rescue of two men.

Mair, along with Officers Vaughn Edwards, Brian McCline and Vincent Russomanno were honored on April 19.

Four Camden police officers were honored Friday after they pulled four men from the burning wreckage of a car crash on Interstate 676.

The video showed them shattering windows and withstanding intense heat as flames engulfed two vehicles and began burning the drivers trapped inside.

Aided by Delaware River Port Authority police Officer Franklin Flash and various bystanders, the officers pulled the men away from the wreckage just before the flames fully engulfed the cars.

"Your adrenaline's rushing, but at the end of the day you have a job to do and you don't want anyone getting hurt," Edwards said. "Our motto here is, 'Service before self,' so we have to put that before ourselves."

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