Update - GBI Investigates Officer Involved Shooting in Valdosta
(UPDATE) Valdosta, Georgia – On Friday, July 15, 2016, Stephen Paul Beck had his first appearance before a Lowndes County Magistrate Judge while still located at the South Georgia Medical Center. Beck has been charged with three (3) Counts of Aggravated Assault on a Peace Officer, one (1) Count of Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of a Crime, and for the Attempted Murder of a Peace Officer. Bond was denied on all Counts.
(UPDATE) Valdosta, Georgia - On Saturday July 9, Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) Agents interviewed Stephen Paul Beck who remains hospitalized. During the interview, Beck admitted he called 911 and shot officer Hancock because he wanted the police to shoot him as he wanted to die. Beck stated he suffers from depression and has no hatred for police. Beck is in stable condition and remains under medical supervision. Criminal charges against Beck for aggravated assault on a police officer are pending. Officer Hancock remains hospitalized and is in stable condition.
The vehicle belonging to Beck was located by authorities last night and is no longer wanted.
Valdosta, Georgia - On Friday, July 08, 2016, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation was requested by the Valdosta Police Department to investigate an officer involved shooting incident that occurred at Three Oaks Apartments in Valdosta.
Preliminary information indicates that at approximately 7:54 AM, Valdosta Police Officer Randall Hancock was dispatched to the apartment complex regarding a vehicle break-in and damage to property call. The caller, identified as Stephen Paul Beck, age 22, reported that his car had been broken into and needed police to respond. At approximately 8:12 AM, Officer Hancock arrived at the apartment complex. Upon exiting his patrol car, Officer Hancock was fired upon, striking him at least twice in his protective vest and once beneath the vest in the abdomen area. Officer Hancock returned fire, striking the individual and stopping him from firing at him. The individual was unknown to Officer Hancock at the time of the encounter and it was later determined the individual was Beck, the 911 caller.
Officer Hancock was taken to an area hospital where he was treated and is in stable condition. Beck was also transported to an area hospital where he remains in serious condition. The investigation is ongoing as agents are looking for a 2009 silver Nissan Sentra, Georgia Tag PVW 8141, belonging to Beck. Anyone with information about the location of the vehicle is asked to call the Valdosta Police Department at 229-293-3145 or the Thomasville GBI Regional Office at 229-225-4090.
The motive behind the shooting is unknown at this time. There is no indication of a connection to the police shootings in Dallas, Texas.
The GBI will conduct an independent investigation to determine what occurred during the incident. When the investigation is complete, it will be turned over to the District Attorney’s Office for review.