Park Ranger Shot at Lake Lanier

Buford Dam Park

Buford Dam Park on Lake Lanier

Bad news from Lake Lanier.

An emergency call was received by authorities at about 10:15 PM, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, of a shooting at the Lower Overlook area of Buford Dam Park on Lake Lanier.

A federal park ranger is recovering following surgery for a gunshot wound suffered after approaching a black woman in a pickup truck to tell her the park was closed.

The wounded ranger said the woman shot him in the stomach without warning.

According to Gwinnett County’s Public Information Officer Cpl. Jake Smith, “He was approaching this vehicle with the intention of just saying, ‘Hey, the park is closed, and you need to go.  There was no kind of confrontation or argument or anything like that between the two of them. She simply produced the gun and shot him one time.”

After the ranger was shot, he managed to walk to the main road in the park and was helped by a motorist.

Police later searched the area and found a woman fitting the description given by the ranger.  She was inside the truck.  She had apparently turned the gun on herself and taken her own life.

A variety of law enforcement officers and park personnel patrol and manage recreation areas around Lake Lanier. Some carry weapons and have arrest powers, others do not.  Evidently, the park ranger in this case was unarmed and was not wearing a bulletproof vest.

We want to thank whomever helped this wounded ranger and called the authorities.

We’ll update this story as verifiable information becomes available.