A Jackson, Georgia police officer has been sentenced to 15 years in prison, followed by 23 years probation for falsely claiming she was shot by a 6′, 230 pound black man on September 13, 2016.
The truth is Officer Sherry Hall, 43, had a bullet lodged in her bullet-proof vest, but she did it herself. Her fabrication led police on a days-long manhunt for a man who allegedly pulled a gun and shot her, completely unprovoked, reported AJC.
The incident occurred shortly after several police officers were shot across the nation, allegedly in retaliation for white cops unnecessarily killing black people.
After hearing evidence, a jury convicted the former officer of 11 criminal charges, including making false statements, violating her oath and tampering with evidence.
Jackson Police Chief James Morgan said he still does not fully know why Hall did what she did.
“She did a great job for us, up until that night,” Morgan said. “So we didn’t see this coming. But this was not a mistake. It was a conscious decision and a choreographed act.”
No one was killed in the manhunt that ensued after Hall’s tale, but 1 man was arrested and released after questioning.
Before the trial, Hall was offered a plea deal of only 5 years in prison and 5 years probation, but she declined, apparently hoping the jury would set her free.
Hall initially said she pulled into Camilla Court and turned her spotlight on the black man wearing a green shirt. He pulled out a gun and shot her. She took cover behind her car and fired 2 shots.
She was unaware the dash cam was actually operating, even though she did not turn it on. Only 2 shots can be heard int e audio recording, but there were 3 based on her story.
Strangely, there were 3 cartridge casings at the scene. Two near the police car and 1 in the woods where the alleged shooter was standing.
The 2 casings near the car matched the gun Hall was carrying, but the one in the woods matched a department-issued backup firearm that Hall kept in her home. Investigators determined the firing pin on that gun had been tampered with.
Hall also claimed to have PTSD after the fake shooting.
She has refused to take responsibility for her actions, but some have speculated she wanted to make herself look more impressive to other officers, or to get disability payments for her fake PTSD.
“I couldn’t prove what the motive was,” Assistant District Attorney James Moss said. “But I could prove that what she said was a big bucket full of malarkey.”
“It was dumbfounding that she went to trial,” Moss said. “She never took responsibility. She invented out of whole cloth a black man who shot her, and if law enforcement hadn’t done their jobs right, we could have had a gentleman wrongly charged with a crime.”
Kimberly Berry, Hall’s attorney claimed Hall was having an emotional breakdown at the time of the incident, and says she still does not know what she was doing.
“The day after, she checked herself into a facility for mental health treatment,” Berry said. “She was basically having a nervous breakdown.”
Berry added, “I think Sherry, to this day, doesn’t know exactly what happened.”