The search is on for a handful of gunmen in Lowndes County. A series of seemingly random shootings has put one small town's police force on the offensive. But for the tiny town of Mosses, investigating a crime like this is a very difficult task.
The latest shooting happened over the weekend in Rachel Sole's front yard. She says a woman drove by and warned her that the gunmen were on their way. Minutes later, she recalls dozens of shots.
Rachel's granddaughter, 21-year-old Rose Ann Williams was hit. "The bullet went in to the back of her head," Sole says. Williams was released Wednesday from a Montgomery hospital. Doctors say she will have to return for surgery to remove the bullet, which is still lodged in her neck.
Mosses Police Chief Shawnee Perry says of the series of shootings, "I didn't expect it, but I'm prepared for it."
The reason she didn't expect it is because Perry has only been on the job three weeks. She replaced former Chief Henry Gorden, who was convicted seven months ago on federal drug charges.
Now, this brand new chief, who has not a single officer, is facing a massive shooting investigation. Fortunately, she has the help of the Lowndes County Sheriff's Department.
"This is not the wild, wild west and we will not tolerate any shooting," says Sheriff Willie Vaughner. He encourages Mosses residents to come forward with any information that could help in the investigation.
Mosses Mayor Walter Hill says he's optimistic that arrests will be made in the case by the end of the week. And, he says he expects the city will be able to hire two police officers within the next month.
Chief Perry says she is not sure what's at the root of the shootings, but she too is optimistic that the culprits will be caught. "They're retaliating against each other for God knows what. But we're gonna get to the bottom of it," she says.
Her citizens are hoping she'll do just that. After what happened at Rachel Sole's house, some are worried it will happen again. "I don't want to stay at my house, but I don't have no other choice," Sole says.