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Two civilians honored for saving police officer
GREEN ISLAND -- An honor for two local men, who rushed to save a police officer in Green Island.
It happened when a man allegedly intentionally slammed into Officer William Rice's cruiser in June. Officer Rice was thrown into the windshield.
"At that point, I just thought it was a simple traffic accident - someone just veered off and struck me," Officer Rice tells CBS 6. "Next thing I knew, the driver's side door was opening - so I just assumed someone was trying to help me out of the car."
Instead, he says, it was the other driver - jumping into the cruiser, and yelling that he wanted to die.
The man allegedly grabbed for Officer Rice's gun, but couldn't reach it, and kept Rice pinned down.
"He was leaning across on top of me, and I looked out and saw two individuals - the two gentlemen - standing outside looking."
One of those two gentlemen was Christopher Cosgrove.
"He was having trouble standing up, so I asked, 'Are you ok?' And he said, 'No,'" Cosgrove recalls, "so that's when I knew we had to - I was fumbling around with my phone trying to call 911."
He along with civilian Robert Coffey managed to reach into the vehicle, pull the man off of Officer Rice, and call 911.
State police and emergency crews arrived on scene a short time later.
"We all kinda, same thing, didn't know what was happening - it unfolded right in front of us," Cosgrove says.
Officer Rice says he's thankful for the pair's quick action.
"Either I would've been killed, or he would've been killed, but someone would've died that night," he says.
The man accused in the case, James Knowles, has been released on bail. He faces a number of charges, including vehicular assault.