An image of the bullet lodged above the bumper of the car U.S. Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Cassville, had been driving through North Georgia in Sept. 2017. ALYSSA POINTER/ALYSSA.POINTER@AJC.COM

Georgia congressman says car targeted in recent shooting

The Republican said he and his wife Desiree were heading toward the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway in September when they heard a single “thump” come from the back of the car they were driving. 

“I’d just passed it off as just something falling down in the trunk or (us) just hearing things or a rock hitting the back of the car,” Loudermilk said in a recent interview with the AJC

But the couple later discovered a bullet lodged above the bumper of the car they were driving, which belonged to their daughter.  

Loudermilk said the incident, which had not previously been disclosed publicly, attracted the interest of the FBI due to the angle of the shot. 

“The trajectory was directly toward the headrest of the driver,” he recounted, “but the elevation was wrong.” 

Loudermilk said the agents couldn’t determine whether the shooter knew a member of Congress was driving the car, but that “they believe the car was targeted” due to the angle of the shot and the fact that no similar incidents had occurred nearby that day. 

An FBI spokesman confirmed the agency is investigating the incident but declined to comment further.

The incident marks the second time that the two-term congressman had been shot at in less than a year

Loudermilk was on the Alexandria, Va., field in June when a gunman opened fire on a GOP baseball practice. He was also involved in a train crash and severe car accident that he says have collectively reshaped his life in both D.C. and at home, including his approach to civility in politics. 

Read more: Georgia’s Loudermilk endures traumatic year sure of the work he’s doing

Republican U.S. Rep. Barry Loudermilk of Cassville and his wife, Desiree, in Feb. 2018. ALYSSA POINTER/ALYSSA.POINTER@AJC.COM
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

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About the Author

Tamar Hallerman
Tamar Hallerman
Tamar Hallerman is a senior reporter for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's enterprise team, where she covers women in society, LGBTQ issues, the urban-rural...