published Thursday, June 14th, 2012

Fort Oglethorpe officer shoots robbery suspect

A man shot by a Fort Oglethorpe police officer while allegedly trying to rob an antique store has been released from the hospital.

Ronald Lee Boltz, 56, was spotted around 11 p.m. Tuesday inside the Gateway Antique Mall off Cloud Springs Road and officers surrounded the strip mall, Fort Oglethorpe Police Chief David Eubanks said.

When the man fled, carrying an "unidentified object" in his hand, he was shot, Eubanks said. But the chief wouldn't identify the item in Boltz's hand.

The name of the officer who shot Boltz hasn't been released, but he has worked at the department for four years, Eubanks said. He will be investigated by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, which is standard procedure in officer-involved shootings.

After Boltz was treated for non-life-threatening wounds and released from Erlanger hospital, the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office picked him up, the chief said.

Boltz will be taken to Georgia to face charges of burglary, obstruction of an officer and aggravated assault, Eubanks said.

Meanwhile, the antique store manager said he's thankful nothing was taken from the store.

A back window was broken, but nothing else was destroyed, Zachary Drennan said. This is the first break-in attempt in a while, he said, and the store doesn't have any plans to change its security.

Officers often patrol the area and check the store, and for that "we're very appreciative," Drennan said.

about Joy Lukachick Smith...

Joy Lukachick Smith is the city government reporter for the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Since 2009, she's covered crime and court systems in North Georgia and rural Tennessee, landed an exclusive in-prison interview with a former cop convicted of killing his wife, exposed impropriety in an FBI-led, child-sex online sting and exposed corruption in government agencies. Earlier this year, Smith won the Malcolm Law Memorial Award for Investigative Reporting. She also won first place in ...

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