Georgia sheriff calls woman's shooting a tragic accident

In this Thursday, Jan. 13, 2005, file photo, Newly sworn-in Clayton County Sheriff Victor Hill, foreground, stands with arms folded after speaking to his deputies in Jonesboro, Ga.

ATLANTA -- A metro Atlanta sheriff who shot and critically injured a woman says the victim is a dear friend and that he's been focused on supporting her family since the shooting.

Police have said real estate agent Gwenevere McCord, 43, of Jonesboro was shot in the abdomen by Clayton County Sheriff Victor Hill while the two were alone inside a model home on Sunday.

Details about the circumstances that led to the shooting are unclear. It occurred roughly 50 miles northeast of Jonesboro, where Hill's office is located.

"I will continue to pray unceasingly for her recovery. I ask you all to please pray for Gwenevere and her family throughout this most difficult time," Hill said in a statement Tuesday.

Hill called 911 to report the shooting and said that it was a tragic accident. He left the scene without giving a statement to investigators and has not been arrested.

Arresting a Georgia law enforcement officer for any action taken as part of his duties requires that an arrest warrant be obtained from a superior court judge, a state court judge or a probate court judge, said Terry Norris, executive director of the Georgia Sheriffs' Association. Warrants for law enforcement officers may not be obtained from a municipal or magistrate court judge, he added.

However, if the incident didn't stem from the officer's duties, he should be treated like a citizen, Norris said.

Hill was voted out of office in 2008 and was elected to a second term in 2012, despite being under indictment on felony corruption charges. Hill was accused of pocketing money from his failed 2008 re-election campaign and using county resources for personal purposes. A jury later acquitted him of the 27 felony charges.

McCord's father, Ernest, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution ( that Hill and his daughter are good friends and she worked on one of his campaigns.

"He's taking a lot of heat in the media for not talking," McCord said. "We don't feel like it's anything he's done intentionally. That's what people need to understand."

McCord said his daughter is hospitalized with tubes in her throat and hasn't been able to tell her family what led to the shooting.

A call to Hill's attorney was not immediately returned Tuesday.