Inmate intentionally set fire, ‘targeted’ and killed NC corrections officer, SBI says

Craig Wissink and Sgt. Meggan Callahan (N.C. Department of Public Safety/Photo provided by Jessie Haywood)

WINDSOR, N.C. (WNCT) — The inmate charged with killing a female correctional officer at the Bertie Correctional Institution purposely targeted her, according to the State Bureau of Investigation’s investigator Anthony Jernigan.


Jernigan said Craig Wissink intentionally set the fire Sgt. Meggan Lee Callahan responded to before she was beaten to death with a fire extinguisher.

RELATED: Inmate used fire extinguisher in deadly assault of NC corrections officer, officials say

Craig Clifford Wissink, 35, is facing a first-degree murder charge in the killing of Callahan.

Callahan and two other officers responded to the fire around 5:30 p.m. on April 26 in a dormitory at Bertie Correctional Institution. Callahan got a fire extinguisher and attempted to put out the fire when authorities said Wissink attacked her.

Wissink managed to get the fire extinguisher away from Callahan and assaulted her with it, according to the North Carolina Department of Public Safety.

In a 911 call made shortly after the attack, an officer tells the dispatcher there is an officer down suffering a contusion to the head.

RELATED: Gov. Cooper orders NC flags at half-staff for slain corrections officer

Callahan died from injuries sustained from the attack at about 6:20 p.m.

Callahan, of Edenton, had been with the department since January 2012. She was promoted to sergeant in February 2016.

Wissink has been in prison since April 2004. He is serving a life sentence for a first-degree murder conviction in Cumberland County. He was moved to Central Prison in Raleigh following the attack.

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