Police arrest LaGrange man accused of firing shots behind Walmart during ‘mental break’

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Man accused of firing gun behind store

By Melanie Ruberti




LaGRANGE — LaGrange police announced Monday the man suspected of firing a gun behind Walmart on New Franklin Road on Aug. 29 has been arrested.

LaGrange police Sgt. William Nelson confirmed Michael Fitzpatrick, 25, of Old Airport Road, was taken into custody Monday morning.

He was charged with possession of less than one ounce of marijuana, discharging a firearm while near a public road, discharging a firearm while under the influence of drugs, reckless conduct, possession of a schedule II drug and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, stated Nelson.

Fitzpatrick is accused of firing several shots near the loading docks behind the store around 9 a.m. Aug. 29. No one was hurt.

Nelson said officers initially only found evidence of the gunfire, but could not find a suspect. Investigators reviewed a store video, which showed a partially clothed man running from the woods behind the building and firing shots in various directions, Nelson stated.

The video also revealed someone driving a dark sedan picked the man up from behind the store and left the area, according to a police report.

A short time later, deputies with the Troup County Sheriff’s Office responded to the 100 block of Glenda Drive, a short distance from Walmart, in reference to a person possibly shot inside a vehicle, Nelson said.

After arriving, they determined that no one had been shot, but, Nelson said, the car appeared to be the same one from the Walmart video.

Investigators believe the man at Glenda Drive, identified as Fitzpatrick, is the same person shown in the video firing shots at Walmart.

Nelson said Fitzpatrick appeared to be suffering a mental break associated with the use of illegal drugs from the night before. He was unable to give coherent details about what happened and allegedly told detectives he was shooting because he believed he was being chased.

Investigators said there was no evidence Fitzpatrick was being chased on the store video.

He was taken to West Georgia Medical Center for treatment.

Melanie Ruberti is a reporter with LaGrange Daily News. She can be reached at 706-884-7311, ext. 2156.