A husband and wife team who were recently charged with assault while picking up a high profile load claim they were the victims in the incident and are now fighting back in court.
On Thursday, December 13, truck driver Clinton Kirker will be appearing in court to fight charges of disorderly conduct and assault related to a September 11, 2018, incident that took place at the Metro Foods distribution center in Olive Branch, Mississippi.
The incident began when Clinton Kirker and his wife Shannon Kirker arrived at the facility to pick up a load that they assumed was normal food load, according to Local Memphis.
Clinton Kirker said he sensed something was different about the load after security stopped his truck on the way in and ordered the truckers to exit their vehicle.
The interaction took a hostile turn when one of the guards asked Clinton Kirker to keep his hands out of his pockets and he reportedly failed to comply.
“It’s a comfort issue for me. We didn’t even get halfway through the truck, he turned around and said, ‘Take your hands out of your pocket,’” Clinton Kirker said.
After several tense minutes, the Kirkers decided that they wanted to leave the property.
“We started walking back to the truck and that’s when the guard stepped in front of me and said, ‘you can’t leave yet,’” said Clinton Kirker.
Kirker said he told the guards that he was leaving and they refused to let him go. That’s when a physical altercation between the Kirkers and security guards took place.
Clinton Kirker said he was shocked after being physically detained by the security guards.
“I can’t believe I’m being assaulted. I started screaming, ‘I want the police called. This is unlawful,'” he explained.
After the incident, Clinton Kirker was arrested and charged. Shannon Kirker did not face any charges after the incident but was transported to a local hospital.
Clinton Kirker shared images of himself with cuts and bruises after the altercation.
Clinton Kirker said he only recently learned that the load he picked up wasn’t an ordinary grocery load, and was instead a high profile pharmaceutical load.
“It was pharmaceuticals for the CDC. I wouldn’t have taken the load had I known that.”
Metro Foods Inc. provided the following statement about the alleged assault:
“Security for the facility is provided by an outside security firm. All trucks are inspected prior to entering, as has been the case for many years. Thousands of trucks have been inspected in a professional and courteous manner with no altercations. Outside of the above statement, the company does not comment on legal proceedings.”
Nevertheless, Shannon Kirker believes that the guards went too far.
“It’s unlawful what they did to us,” she said.
Clinton Kirker will appear in court on Thursday, December 13, to defend against the assault and disorderly charges.
In addition, he recently released a clip of the security footage of the incident, which has gone viral on social media. You can see it below.