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Hundreds of Police Pay Tribute


Posted on Feb 06, 2012

Hundreds of police officers turned out Monday to pay tribute to Atlanta Police Senior Officer  Gail Thomas, who was hit by a car and killed last week on an interstate ramp.
A motorcade, led by more than 100 motorcycles, proceeded slowly from Turner Field to Elizabeth Baptist Church on Cascade Road for the funeral for Thomas, the second female Atlanta officer killed in the line of duty.
Atlanta Police Chief George Turner thanked the officers for coming out and "honoring Gail. ... it just shows the large family of law enforcement and that when one falls, all of us are affected," he said. "It's all part of the opportunity for us to kind of heal through the process and grieve through it and allow that process to be completed."
Thomas, 46, died late Tuesday night after being struck by a vehicle driven by a  suspected drunken driver as she exited her patrol car north of downtown Atlanta, according to police. The 20-year APD veteran, who had arrived to help another officer working an earlier accident, died at the scene.
The accident occurred on the ramp from I-75 southbound at I-85 northbound.
Chasity Jones, 22, of Stone Mountain remained in the Fulton County Jail on Monday, held without bond. Charges include first-degree homicide by vehicle, driving under the influence and reckless driving. Her next hearing is scheduled for Feb. 9.
A visitation for Thomas was held Sunday. The funeral is at 11 a.m. with burial  at Mount Harmony Cemetery on Veterans Memorial Parkway in Mableton.
Later in the week, Humble Heroes and Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q will host a fundraiser to benefit Thomas' family on Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.  Thomas leaves to mourn a daughter, Jasmine, a 22-year-old Georgia Southern University student.
The APD said Saturday that  a trust fund also has been set up for Thomas' daughter. Donations can be made at Bank of America in the name of "Senior Police Officer Gail Thomas' Daughter's Trust."
-- Staff photographer John Spink and dispatch editor Angel K. Brooks contributed to this report.

Wrongful death attorney, Shane Smith, offers condolences to the family and friends of Ms. Thomas.

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Shane Smith
Advocate for the Seriously Injured in Georgia