Chapter one: A life-changing event caught on video
Nearly three years ago, a Peach County man says he woke up from a deep sleep to knocking at his front door.
It was 3 a.m., so he went to the door with a gun, but he's the one who ended up getting shot.
Lonnie Shaw says that shooting in May 2016 left him nearly dead -- exploding his liver and severely damaging his lungs and intestines.
Now, Shaw is the one charged with aggravated assault for allegedly pointing his pistol at a deputy who showed up on his doorstep. Shaw says he never raised a gun at that officer.
For the first time since he was shot, Shaw is releasing his home surveillance video from the night of the incident.
It all started on the night of May 30, 2016. Shaw says he and his wife, Dawn, went to bed around midnight.
Shaw says around 3 a.m., Dawn heard someone knocking at their front door and saw two men on their home surveillance system that she thought were deputies.
She told Lonnie to go see what they wanted.
He was just waking up and she's not sure he heard that they were deputies. He says he took a gun because he wasn't sure who was there.
"I did have a little pistol in my hand behind my right leg. I never lied to them about that one bit. It's on video tape. He claims I raised a gun, pointed it at him -- that's a complete lie," said Shaw.
The officers knocked for a full minute before Lonnie answered.
"The porch light blinded me. It hit me and it startled me. I kind of squinted my eyes and looked toward the ground a little bit and went ahead and hollered, 'Yes sir,'" said Shaw.
Shaw's right hand -- the one holding the pistol -- is not completely visible in part of the video. But Shaw says he never raised the weapon and only made a slight movement, a natural reaction, because he saw something coming at him.
"He drew his gun and was sticking it in the house towards me. That's why I made the move because it looked like someone was reaching at me," said Shaw.
It doesn't appear from the surveillance video that the deputies gave Shaw any verbal orders, like telling him to drop the gun.
But less than five seconds after Shaw opens the door, Peach Deputy Brandon Williams fires one shot, striking Shaw in the lower chest.
"There was so much blood coming out of me, I thought I was dreaming," said Shaw.
In the video, both deputies jump back startled and Shaw falls backwards.
Williams' partner, James Perry, asks him if Shaw had a gun. Williams replies, "yeah."
Shaw gave 13WMAZ video obtained by his lawyer that appears to show Deputy Williams' interview with the GBI.
You can see the full 56-minute video unedited from how WMAZ received it below.
Williams tells the agent that Shaw 'spun around' to get a better view of him and his partner.
"He was going to shoot me or my partner, I was scared," said Williams. "He was coming up and beginning to point... and then he turned his body like this like he was trying to get to the other side to get like a better shot on us."
But the video never shows Shaw spinning around.
In the video you can hear Dawn scream, "What in the hell is going on? What did y'all shoot him? We were sleeping! It's 3:00 in the morning!"
It turns out there was some confusion.
According to GBI Special Agent JT Ricketson, the deputies were not sent to 50 West Valley Drive to find Shaw -- they were sent to investigate the home after Shaw's stepson showed up to the hospital with a gun shot wound.
In an e-mail to 13WMAZ, Ricketson says investigators later determined the stepson accidentally shot himself on a dirt road in Crawford County.
Shaw says he's gone through five blood transfusions, many surgeries and has racked up about $1 million in medical bills.
Then, in September 2018, a Peach County grand jury indicted Shaw on a second charge -- possession of a firearm while committing a felony.
Macon Judicial Circuit District Attorney David Cooke says Shaw was scheduled for trial last fall, but his defense team asked for more time.
"I don't think it's appropriate for me to get into the facts, other than to say based on the evidence we had, we brought the case to a grand jury and they felt they had enough evidence to indict... and we look forward to the day we can get justice for the officer and the community," said Cooke.
He hopes the case goes to trial this spring.
In the meantime, Shaw hopes that others understand his side of the story.
Amy Leigh Womack with the District Attorney's Office says Shaw faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted on both counts.
Peach County Sheriff Terry Deese declined to go on camera saying that he didn't want to say anything that could jeopardize the trial.
13WMAZ also spoke to Deputy Williams by phone, who referred us to the District Attorney for further comment. We did not receive a call back from Deputy Perry.