Georgia police chief who shot wife in bed resigns
Peachtree Police Chief William McCollom (NBC News)

A suburban Atlanta police chief who faces possible indictment for shooting his wife in bed on New Year's Day, partially paralyzing her, resigned on Wednesday.


"In light of the recent tragedy in my personal family, I need to continue to focus my time and efforts there," Peachtree City Police Chief William McCollom said in a statement.

McCollom went to sleep around 9:30 p.m. on New Year's Eve after drinking alcohol and taking sleep medication, Fayette County District Attorney Scott Ballard said last week.

Awakened by barking dogs, the chief retrieved his service revolver and checked the house, then returned to bed with the gun, Ballard said.

McCollom told a police dispatcher that the gun discharged, striking his wife, Margaret, after he tried to move the weapon to the side of the bed.

Although the district attorney said there is no evidence the chief intended to hurt his wife, the prosecutor plans to ask a grand jury next month to indict McCollom on a misdemeanor charge of reckless conduct for taking a loaded gun to bed with him after drinking alcohol and taking sleep medication.

(Reporting by David Beasley; Editing by Jonathan Kaminsky and Eric Beech)