POLICE OFFICER Charles "Reds" Mellor was in the alley behind the MOVE house with his partner, James Berghaier, when the fire began. He stood in the middle of the alley to provide cover as Berghaier rescued Birdie Africa. He coaxed Ramona Africa down the alley and placed her under arrest.
1985: When Berghaier said he was going to rescue Birdie, Mellor warned him, "It could be a trap." Mellor then moved to the middle of the alley to cover Berghaier.
He also watched Ramona as she came down the alley toward them.
"I was watching her. I was watching Birdie. . . . I was watching Jimmy to make sure he was all right, and the only way I could do that was stand exactly where I stood. It was very uncomfortable, but if I hadn't done that and something had happened to Jimmy, I would never have forgiven myself," he said in a recent interview. "It seemed like it took an hour and I'm sure it took a minute."