Clayton County

'He was not in his right mind' Family of man killed after shooting 2 officers speaks

CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. — The family of the man who was killed after shooting two police officers told Channel 2 Action News he's not a monster.

Officer Tim Sterrett and Officer Demarkus Hutcherson were shot when they attempted to pull over James Jacob Bailey, 30, near Mitchell Street.

Tim Sterrett and Demarkus Hutcherson 

Bailey later died.

Channel 2's Tom Jones spoke with Bailey's family Thursday.

"He was not in his right mind, I'm telling you," his mother, Chris Bailey, told Jones. “I'm sorry what happened to the policemen. They're alive, but my son's dead.”

Chris Bailey described her son as too generous and kind to shoot anyone -- that is, until drugs got the best of him.

"He was just a very good person but then he found that drug and then it took him away," said his sister, Jennifer Bailey.

Forest Park police said they confronted Bailey after getting calls about someone riding a motorcycle erratically on Mitchell Street on Wednesday.


Investigators said Bailey ran behind a house and there was gunfire. Police said Bailey shot officer Tim Sterrett in the face and officer Demarcus Hutcherson in the leg.

The GBI said a bullet fired by one of the officers killed Bailey.

Jennifer Bailey said officers did what they had to do.

When asked by Jones, if she blames police, Jennifer Bailey said, "No, I know what happened, happened."

Bailey's family told Jones he had been in and out jail and rehabilitation facilities.

"His pain with drugs is over. I just hope no other parent has to go through this," Chris Bailey said. “He's been in trouble for family violence, he's been in trouble for this. He's done his time. Why are they making him look like a monster? He's not a monster.

Before that, he was the life of the party, devoted to his two kids. Then his family says he became devoted to drugs.

"Meth. It hurts people so bad. Not just the person that does it but their family and their friends. And because of that I don't have a brother anymore," Jennifer Bailey said.

Sterrett had surgery Wednesday night and is improving. Hutcherson is stable and has been released from the hospital.

“I'm truly sorry for what he did. I never expected for him to ever do anything like this,” Jennifer Bailey said. “It's horrible I had to lose my brother over it. I'm sorry about the officers. My prayers are with their families.”

The Bailey family apologized to the officers and their families.