Former Jackson police officer charged in 11-count indictment
Posted 4:42 p.m. Monday
Butts County, GA — The former Jackson police officer accused of lying about being shot while on patrol last September has been indicted by a Butts County grand jury on 11 charges.
Sherry Hall, 42, was indicted July 11 on four counts of making a false statement, four counts of violation of oath by a public officer, two counts of interference with government property and one count of tampering with evidence.
Warrants for Hall's arrest were initially filed Sept. 23 after the Georgia Bureau of Investigation alleged that she was not shot by an assailant while on patrol on Camellia Court around midnight as she claimed Sept. 13.
She was fired from the department following her arrest.
Authorities accuse Hall of planting a shell casing at the scene fired from a department-issued pistol she lied to investigators about having. Investigators said she claimed to have been shot by a black man in a green shirt standing near the wood line.
In a statement, the GBI said when Hall viewed footage from her patrol car camera obtained from its hard drive with the help of a digital forensic investigator and the camera's manufacturer, she stopped cooperating with the investigation.
According to a search warrant application filed in the case, when investigators reviewed the camera's footage, only two shots could be heard, though three shell cases were found at the scene.
The indictments charging Hall with interference with government property stem from accusations she defaced the Glock 27 she claimed not to have and damaged a department-issued vest.
Authorities have not said what they believe Hall's motivation may have been for allegedly weaving a tale about being shot during an encounter that didn't happen.
The incident sparked what appeared initially to be a manhunt focused on finding the shooter but the focus of the investigation turned to Hall herself when "it was revealed that inconsistencies existed with regard to Hall's statements, witness statements, physical evidence and later examination of forensic evidence," the GBI said in the statement.
"After following the leads and evidence, the investigation has now revealed that there is no, and never was, a suspect shooter at large in Jackson, Georgia," the GBI said.
Hall was denied bond during a court appearance in October, but according to court documents was granted $35,000 bond Dec. 1.
In a letter to an Atlanta TV station, Hall purportedly wrote that she was innocent and her arrest was the result of a "cover up."
"First and foremost, I am innocent of all charges and allegations," Hall wrote, according to WSB-TV. "This is nothing more than a cover up in a small town."
Attorneys Kimberly A. Berry and Christina Champagne, who according to court records began representing Hall June 28, could not immediately be reached for comment Thursday.