Sherry Hall, a police officer in Jackson, Ga., has been "charged with four felonies, including evidence tampering and giving false statements to investigators," after the Georgia Bureau of Investigation determined that she lied about being shot by an unidentified black man," the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
“The investigation has revealed that there is no and never was a suspect at large in Jackson, Georgia,” said GBI Special Agent in Charge Joe Wooten.
On Sept. 13, Hall claimed that she was on patrol around midnight and saw a "6-foot, 230-pound black man wearing a green shirt and black jogging pants" just sitting on the side of the road.
"After she exited her vehicle, he became very argumentative,” said Police Chief James Morgan at the time. “And at some point, he pulled a weapon and fired one round in her direction, striking her in the lower abdomen area of her body armor.”
According to Morgan, Hall told him that she managed to get one round off before the man fled into the woods. Hall was rushed to a local hospital, where she was treated for a "deep bruise."
Though Hall stuck to her story during at least three separate interviews with the GBI, her lies fell completely apart during the subsequent 600 hours of investigation.
Read more from the AJC:
At first, she said she failed to “engage her in-car video and audio,” so there was no evidence to back her up. But Wooten said the manufacturer helped recover digital forensic evidence that showed “inconsistencies.”
After Hall was again interviewed, she stopped cooperating with the GBI.
Video and audio recording evidence shows there were only two shots fired at the scene, while Hall said there were three, Jackson District Attorney Richard Milam said.
Hall also failed to tell investigators she had an extra handgun with her the night she was shot. It was found after officials executed a search warrant at her house earlier this week.
Hall was placed on paid administrative leave after the shooting and has checked herself into a private facility to seek help. Though racism is a disease, we have not been able to confirm that Hall is being treated for that particular sickness.
“Upon release, she will be arrested,” Wooten said.
Jackson is a small central Georgia community about 50 miles south of Atlanta. According to Jackson Mayor Kay Pippen, “For two weeks this incident has cast an image of the city of Jackson that does not reflect who we are."
Terence Crutcher of Tulsa, Okla., was fatally shot by Officer Betty Shelby last week, in large part because police officers were racist enough to assume that a large black man must naturally be a "bad dude."
Though no innocent black man who "fit the description" was killed because of Hall's dangerous dishonesty, Hall—like Shelby—should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. But since the "law" serves and protects those with badges, we won't be holding our collective breath.
Read more at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.