Indictments Sought for Police Who Shot Woman After Chase

Two Glynn County police officers shot a woman on June 18. She was killed after a half-hour low-speed chase that ended in a residential neighborhood.

The victim was Caroline Small, 35 of Glynn County. Police had blocked her vehicle in Waverly Pines with two squad cars. Her tires had been flattened with spike strips. The officers said that she appeared to be running them down, and opened fire.

The Glynn County Police Chief, Matt Doering, has said that he believes the shooting was justified.

Acting District Attorney David Perry disagrees. “After reviewing the tape, I felt that we needed to treat this as a criminal investigation,” he said.

Atlanta criminal defense attorneys are aware that Mr. Perry will pursue manslaughter charges against Sergeant Corey Sasser and Officer Todd Simpson. The degree has not been determined. Manslaughter is defined…

Manslaughter, broadly speaking, is killing without premeditation. The maximum sentences for manslaughter are: first degree – 20 years; second degree – 10 years; misdemeanor manslaughter – 1 year.

Glynn County police said at first that Small was shot once in the cheek. An autopsy released Monday indicated she died of multiple gunshot wounds.

Perry said that this was his analysis: “Was there an immediate danger to the officers or the public for them to use the level of force they did? To me the answer was no.”

Source: Brunswick News “D.A. wants to indict officers” June 29, 2010; “Georgia prosecutor wants cops charged in fatal shooting of Brunswick woman” June 29, 2010