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Forsyth, Georgia
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September 5, 2018     The Monroe County Reporter
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September 5, 2018
 

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September 5, 2018 Page 7A MONROE COUNTY COURTS l orter Shot herself, then blamed a black male By Diane Glidewell news@mymcr net A Monroe County jury returned a verdict of guilty Thursday evening on all 10 felony counts against Sherry Hall, the former Jackson city police officer who fabricated the story of being shot by a large black man while she patrolled a neigh- borhood on Sept. 13, 2016. Towaliga District Judge Tommy Wilson sentenced Hall to 15 year in prison and 23 years on probation. In April Hall rejected a plea deal for a five year sen- tence, which would prob- ably have meant serving about 18 months. The trial was moved from Butts County to Monroe County after Hall's attorney, Kimberly Berry of Atlanta, request- ed a change of venue April 18, citing the difficulty of finding an impartial jury in Butts County. Berry also motioned for the Towaliga Judicial Circuit District Attorney's Office to be be removed from the case since Hall's work in law enforcement had brought her into contact with District Attorney employees. However, that motion was denied. Assistant DA James Moss said he felt the case was tried cleanly and well and that 12 diverse and very smart jurors did their job. They listened to four days of evidence and : testimony, which included 150 exhibits. He credited "extremely competent GBI investigators" for giving the D. s office the roe County jury of four video from her patrol car, evidence it needed to women and eight men which she did notknow prosecute the case. He about 50 minutes to find was recording, failed to said that over 600 hours Hall guilty on all counts, match her story. He said of investigative work went About a dozen fam- she led law enforcement into the case from the dif- ily members and friends away from crime ferent agencies involved, who were present for the scene with an account "I appreciate the hos- verdict and sentencingof an active shooter who pitality and hard work of seemed visibly distressed was posing an immedi- the folks in the Monroe as they left the Monroe ate threat, tried to hide County court system who County Courthouse. the gun and disabled its were involved in doing In her dosing argu- firing pin. Her descrip- what they were supposed ments, Berry said that the tion of the shooter varied to do" said Moss. "They jury should acquit Hall from 6'4" to 5'8". She said were gracious and profes- because there was reason- he was wearing a brightly sional? able doubt, colored shirt, but exten- Hall faced 10 charges, "We just don't know sive and immediate search four for making false what happened" said found neither a shooter statements, two for tam- Berry "Was there a cam- or a shirt. Moss said Hall pering and interference era in the sky?" called law enforcement with evidence and four for Berry defended Hall and news media to tell her violations of her oath of against the false statement story, which was shared office as a public officer, charges by saying there nationally. Hall had stated that she was not evidence that Hall "What is reasonable was shot while on patrol made false statements doubt?" said Moss. "How late on a Tuesday evening knowingly and will- much of that jigsaw when she approached a fully about the disabled puzzle do we have to put black man sitting on a Glock gun found in hertogether to know this is curb. She was protected nightstand that matched what it is?" from serious injury by shell casings found at the In spite of saying that her bulletproof vest. A scene. She said the gun she had a relatively long manhunt ensued, but no was bought by the Jack- conversation with the perpetrator was found, son Police Department shooter and that she dic- In the days that followed in 2006 and could havetated a lengthy text mes- two men who fit Hall's been "messed up" before sage after she was shot, description were arrested it was assigned to Hall; so none of it is heard on the and released. Both of she should not be found patrol car tape. Moss not- them claimed trauma guilty of interference with ed that other things are because of the arrests, government property orheard on the tape, like the By the next week with evidence. Berry said shots and a train whistle; enough inconsistencies that although Hall comes so the audio was work- in Hall's story were found from a family that hasing. He noted that motive that its truth came into guns and has shot guns, was not an element in the question. She was fired, she does not know all case; jurors didn't have and eventually she was about how to reassemble to know why she acted as charged, them. she did to find her guilty Hall only started work- "If she is guilty of any- of the actions. ing for the Jackson Police thing, it is lesser offenses "She lied about every- Department on July 3 and not multiple offenses," thing except the shell at before the Sept. 13 inci- said Berry in closing. "It the edge of the woods; dent, coming to Jackson is very difficult to prove said Moss. from the Griffin Police innocence, but that is not In his charge to jurors, Department. Before that the way our system is set Judge Wilson also said she worked with Butts up" that the state was not County Sheriff's Office In his dosing arguments and reportedly had at Moss cited the maxim, least four years experience "Oh, what a tangled web in law enforcement. It we weave when first we was reported that she has practice to deceive." He three children, traced how Hall's story It only took the Mon- seemed good until the BURRUSS CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTE A 42-year- old prison guard at Burruss Correctional Center was arrested and charged with provid- ing cigars and sexual favors to an 18-year-old inmate on Aug. 23. Correc- tions of- ricer Renita Calhoun, 42, Rick Cantrell 478-992-7042 LAND CLEARING / FORESTRY MULCHING BRUSH MOWING / RIGHT OF WAYS / BOUNDARY LINES NO DEBRIS TO HAUL OFF / NO BURNING / ECO FRIENDLY CAJUIOIM of Jackson, is accused of providing black and mild cigars to 18-year-old inmate Antonio Robinson between Aug. 1-17, and also on Aug. 23. Also on Aug. 23 she is accused of rubbing Robinson's penis, according to warrants taken out by corrections officer Jalon Heard. Robinson began serving a 15-year prison sentence for a 2015 armed robbery on Feb. 13, 2018. 21ST 5:30- y WOW INFLATABLES DUNK TANK. GAME BOOTHS PRIZES- FACE PAINTING RAFFLE BASKET, ICE CREAM TRUCK SAND ART DINNER & SNACK CONCESSIONS ALL-INCLUSIVE BRACELETS = $12.00 (INCLUDES UNLIMITED USE OF INFLATABLES & GAME BOOTHS) PER TICKET PRICE = $0.50 (EACH GAME BOOTH WILL COST 1 TICKET & INFLATABLES WILL COST 2 TICKETS) "DUNK TANK, SAND ART, FACE PAINTING/TATTOOS, AND ALL CONCESSIONS WILL BE AN ADDITIONAL COST:' required to present any motive. He told them the defendant is presumed in- nocent until proven guilty and the burden of proof rests on the state. He told them to decide the case on evidence, testimony and exhibits. "Reasonable doubt means just what it says" said Wilson. "It's based on common sense" After the verdict Moss said he has no idea why Hall lied about the shooting or exactly what happened, but he knows her statements were false. He said when she took the stand and the jury saw that she could not explain the inconsistencies, it was a deciding factor in the verdict. "If people take responsi- bility, that's the first step" said Moss. "She took the stand and lied in front of the jury." ** Allproceeds benefltJay's Founda~on WWW, Presenting Sponsor: Knight of Celebration Sponsors: Industrial Propane Gas Georgia Power SSK, REALTORS jl port HELMS MPHS BETA, COLk,=(;,:FBLA, IITI'EflAgT For more Information, call Jay's HOPE Foundation (478) 238=6360