Channel 2 Action News has exclusively learned the wife of the Peachtree City police chief is now paralyzed after being shot by her husband.
Channel 2's Aaron Diamant received information about the extent of Maggie McCollom's injuries shortly after she was released from an Atlanta hospital this week. He has now confirmed through two sources that she has been left paralyzed from the waist down.
Agents with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation began collecting evidence from William McCollom's home shortly after he called 911 around 4 a.m. New Year's Day saying he'd just shot his wife.
Channel 2 Action News was the first to report the release of the 911 tapes.
The GBI is still processing the evidence, which shows Maggie McCollom was shot once in the back. The GBI said William McCollom, who is on paid leave, has been cooperating with investigators. When agents interviewed Maggie McCollom in the hospital last week, she told them she was asleep when the shooting happened, but also believes it was an accident.
"It's different. We don't see many things like this happening in our line of work," said Ken Vance, Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council executive director.
Vance runs the agency that certifies Georgia's police officers.
"If he's charged with a felony, then it would result in an immediate suspension of his certification,” Vance said.
Vance said misdemeanor charges could also trigger action by the post council. but so far, McCollom does not face any charges.
The GBI said it's still waiting for results of tests on the chief's service weapon and a blood alcohol test before it can send a report to the district attorney. That could take several more weeks.
Some Peachtree City residents told Channel 2’s Tyisha Fernandes that they don’t understand why the chief would have his department issued gun loaded in bed with him.
“I'm a little curious why he had his gun in his bed (at) four in the morning,” said resident Susan Anderson.
“One, I'm concerned that if he can't handle a gun any better than that, we got a problem. Two, you're sleeping with the gun in the bed, that really concerns me because are you even worried you got people in there? Three, it just sounds not quite totally right,” said resident Walt Harman.
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Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com