One Charged At This Point After Shots Fired Last Week in Toccoa

August 6, 2013
Police investigate last Thursday's incident where shots were fired in downtown Toccoa

Police investigate last Thursday’s incident where shots were fired in downtown Toccoa

The investigation continues after an incident last week in which shots were fired in downtown Toccoa.

The incident occurred last Thursday at about 5 p.m. in the alley and parking lot area behind WNEG Radio.

Toccoa Police Chief Tim Jarrell said it appears to have stemmed from a personal dispute between 36-year-old Heath Garland and 33-year-old Rob Harding, both of Toccoa.

“Rob Harding pulled through the alleyway behind State Probation in the historical downtown area of Toccoa and saw Garland with a female companion in a vehicle parked at a duplex,” said Jarrell.  “These two gentlemen have had problems for the past six months and have had altercations prior.

Jarrell said Thursday, Harding started to approach Garland in the parking lot area.

“Garland pulled a handgun and told Harding he needed to leave him alone and back off,” said Jarrell.  “Harding kept coming at him and Garland fired two shots.  According to witnesses that were on the scene and Mr. Garland, he heard children scream from the truck and threw his weapon down.  At that time, he and Mr. Harding started a fistfight.”

Jarrell went on to say that officers were responding at this point to the scene from nearby.

“The first officer arrived on scene and Mr. Garland immediately complied with the officer’s commands,” said Jarrell.  “Mr. Harding jumped back in his vehicle and left.  He later came back to the police department where he was interviewed and made a statement.”

Nobody was hurt in the incident.

According to Jarrell, Garland was charged with reckless conduct and released on bond.

He is scheduled to appear next month on the charge in Toccoa Municipal Court.

Jarrell said, however, that the investigation into the incident is not complete and more charges could be forthcoming.

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