Thomas, a DeKalb County merchant who at that moment was a victim of crime, said he believed the officer to be part of a robbing crew with which he had just exchanged gunfire. Roach, who had just left work in his Chevy Tahoe, heard the gunfire and drew his .40-caliber Smith & Wesson on a fleeing Thomas, the only man he saw with a gun.
It was a moment that altered the lives of two longtime solid citizens. This week, both are looking for closure in Fulton Superior Court, where the case is scheduled to be heard. Thomas, who has refused all plea bargains, wants his record cleared. Roach believes Thomas needs substantial time in prison.
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