Deputies: Ex-cop in parade float crash lied about Purple Heart

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CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. —

A former Holly Springs police officer who made headlines after being injured in a parade for war heroes has been arrested.

An investigation by the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office determined that 41-year-old Shane Ladner lied about being a Purple Heart recipient. He was charged with theft by deception, false swearing and false statement to a police officer.

The theft charges stem from Ladner receiving a free Purple Heart license plate for several years. The Sheriff’s Office released a statement Wednesday saying the U.S. Army has no record of the materials Ladner presented to obtain the license plate.

Last year, Ladner and his wife, Meg, were among 16 people hurt in the Midland, Texas, crash. Meg Ladner lost her leg, and four others were killed in the incident. The parade float, filled with wounded veterans and their spouses, was inching across a railroad track when the crossing gates began to lower and a freight train approached.

Ladner is currently being held at the Cherokee County Detention Center with $23,100 bond.