A Spalding County sheriff’s deputy, Marc Mac, was fatally shot, and a second deputy suffered a broken hand while responding to a domestic disturbance and welfare check call on Friday, according to Sheriff Darrell Dix.
Dix explained that when the two deputies arrived at a residence and crossed the yard, they were shot at from a window by a suspect wielding a shotgun.
The identified suspect is 57-year-old Todd Harper. One deputy sustained a gunshot wound to the head, while the other sought cover and returned fire.
Additional officers arriving at the scene managed to retrieve the injured deputy, transporting him for emergency medical care; unfortunately, he succumbed to the critical head injury later on.
Following a prolonged standoff, law enforcement successfully apprehended the suspect. Sheriff Dix detailed a SWAT operation that necessitated significant intervention to reach the suspect, with extensive measures taken to secure the area.
The incident unfolded near Deason Street and Vineyard Road. Sheriff Dix noted that the fallen deputy, a military veteran, served as a supervisor for his colleagues and had been part of the sheriff’s office for approximately 12 years.
Sheriff Dix expressed deep sorrow, stating, “I have an entire shift of deputies who work with this supervisor who are absolutely devastated.” He described the fallen supervisor as a cheerful presence, often greeting others with a smile and fostering a positive atmosphere.
Known for his commanding presence, the deputy had a profound impact on his colleagues, with a leadership style that led by example. Sheriff Dix indicated that the deputy had likely served in the Army in Iraq.
Sheriff Dix remarked on the tragic turn of events, expressing disbelief: “He was a combat veteran, he comes home to serve his community, makes a community safer and he ends up losing his life.”
The sheriff emphasized that the suspect is now in custody at the Spalding County Jail and stated firmly, “He is currently in custody in my jail where he will stay. Not gonna send him to another sheriff’s jail – he killed my deputy, he’s gonna sit in my jail.”
Dix underscored the importance of the suspect facing justice through the legal system and having his case heard by a jury of his peers.
On Friday afternoon, the sheriff announced that the deputy’s body would be transferred to the GBI Crime Lab for a thorough autopsy. The escort for this solemn journey will include personnel from the Georgia State Patrol, law enforcement in Clayton County, and deputies from Spalding County.
This is a developing story that will be updated when more information is available.