Maggie McCollum's condition has been upgraded from "Serious" to "Good Condition" and the GBI made a statement that Mrs. McCollum "thinks it was an accident" but was "sleeping."
We do not have a direct quote.
However, that she would only say she "thinks" it was an accident is not only a weak assertion, but it allows for the subject, herself, and investigators, to think otherwise.
If this was Heather, she would say "it was an accident", whether she was asleep or not, as a signal of confidence in the relationship.
That Mrs. McCollum allows for even the possibility of it not being an accident should lead investigators to ask questions specifically about:
a. the quality of the relationship
b. past assertions by Mrs. McCollum of Domestic Violence
c. other possible victims
d. The hours preceding the shooting, particularly focusing upon the night hours (8PM to Midnight), looking to learn if there was an argument.
As my analysis shows, Chief McCollum was not only deceptive in his 911 call, but used extreme distancing language from his wife, and distancing language from his gun. He also used passive language about the location of the gun in the bed.
This passivity is appropriate if he does not know how his service weapon got into his bed.
Not knowing, after 30 years of law enforcement, is concerning, since officers are not only trained (highly) in gun safety, but become attached to their gun, due to the dangerous nature of their work.
For Maggie McCollum to allow, with the weak assertion of "think" the possibility that her husband deliberately shot her, is a red flag for investigators.
For those of you new to Statement Analysis:
"I locked my keys in the car" is a very strong statement. I use the pronoun "I", and the past tense verb, "locked", which tells you that I believe what I am saying.
"I think I locked my keys in the car" shows weakness. This weakness is appropriate weakness if I am uncertain.
We have even seen this weak assertions in serious crime cases:
"I think I didn't kill her..." or "I think I didn't steal that..."
When we have a weak assertion in a topic that should never have weakness, we have a red flag before us.
Mrs. McCollum is signaling to investigators a belief that her husband could have shot her deliberately. This signal, by itself, is concerning, but when taken in context with the call where the subject yields so little information that he caused the 911 operator to inquire as to the identity of the victim, we have a domestic violence situation.
Is it possible that GBI did not quote her accurately?
It is possible but given the nature of the activity, it is not likely that they were mistaken. Even if fully asleep and unaware, a spouse in a good relationship would not likely allow for the possibility of being shot in a heated argument. This possibility tells us that she has her doubts and that there may be much more to the story than we know. That "everybody was asleep" while only two people were in the home tells us that there may be a third party involved, otherwise, it sounds like alibi establishment, or "story telling", which not only has "everybody was asleep" but it happened "in the middle of the night", rather than "it just happened", bringing the timeline into doubt.