LOGANVILLE, Ga. -- On Tuesday, Walton County released the 911 calls
made as Paul Slater allegedly broke into a home on Henderson Ridge
Drive, hunting down the woman and her two children inside.
Investigators believe he originally intended to rob the homeowners,
but for some reason shifted his focus to finding Melinda Herman and her
twin 9-year old children hiding in a crawl space upstairs.
"At some point he must have seen one of the kids go upstairs or heard
them because he went upstairs, pried open the bedroom door, the
bathroom door, back bathroom door and then pulled open the crawl space
to get to them," said Cpt. Greg Hall with the Walton County Sheriff's
When Slater opened that last door, he was confronted with six bullets
fired from a .38 handgun. Five hit their mark, giving the Hermans a
chance to escape.
Melinda called her husband while the family was in hiding and he in
turn called police. In the 911 tape he tells his wife, "Melinda, if he
opens that door you shoot, you shoot him. You understand?"
Less than two minutes later you hear Donnie Herman tell the 911
dispatcher, "She shot him. She's shooting him. She's shooting him. She's
shooting him again, shoot him!"
The call between Donnie and his wife then goes silent. It will be
seven long agonizing minutes before dispatchers tell Donnie his wife and
children are okay.
Slater made it out of the house as well, but was found nearby on
Jakes Cove, with his car on the side of the road. The police report
says Slater was on the ground bleeding from the face and body.
The family declined to talk about the 911 call or what happened , but Cpt. Hall says they're clearly still shaken.
"Just like I told her that night, there's right and there's wrong and
then there's not natural. And it's not natural to have to shoot
someone. So it's going to bother you and if it doesn't bother you at
some point in your life, there's something wrong." said Hall.
Slater remains on a ventilator in intensive care at Gwinnett Medical Center.