Authorities say Peachtree City Police Chief shot wife
(WSBTV.COM) PEACHTREE CITY, Ga. – The wife of Peachtree City’s police chief is still in critical condition. She was shot with his service weapon early Thursday morning.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation says Peachtree City police chief William McCollom called 911 just after 4 am. saying he had accidentally shot his wife, Margaret McCollom, 58, at their home on Autumn Leaf.
The initial report that came into the GBI said McCollum shot his wife twice, but it was later determined she was only shot once, agents said.
Margaret McCollom was airlifted to Atlanta Medical Center. GBI investigators said the chief is cooperating with them.
City Manager Jim Pennington placed McCollom on leave pending the completion of the investigation and an internal review.
A police spokesman said that is standard procedure with a case involving a high ranking official.
GBI spokeswoman Sherry Lang said the shooting happened in the bedroom but she would not reveal any other details.
Investigators said no one else was in the home at the time. Neighbors are stunned.
“My daughter and I prayed for her as soon as we found out about it,” Gail Guthrie said.
“We’re concerned for Maggie’s health and we’d really like to hear news about her conditions and how she’s doing,” neighbor Rick Viall said.
Fayette County District Attorney Scott Ballard said criminal charges are possible but they would wait for the GBI to complete their investigation.
“We have no leanings one way or the other at this point because we just don’t know. There are a lot of things we don’t know yet about what took place that we need to know before we can make any decisions,” Ballard told Channel 2′s Aaron Diamant.
City leaders say they are helping each other deal with the stunning news.
“It hurts. It bothers you, you really want to support the individual and the individuals that may be involved, on the other time you want to find out what actually happened,” Pennington said.
“In the short time that he’s been chief he’s earned their respect and admiration and this is just a terrible, terrible thing to have happened,” Mayor Vanessa Fleisch said.
McCollom became Peachtree City’s police chief in October. He had been interim police chief since July and previously served as assistant chief. McCollom joined the department in 2012.