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Injured Hall deputy undergoes third surgery

POSTED: August 26, 2008 5:01 a.m.
A deputy who was injured in a standoff with a 65-year-old Lula man last week is recovering from his third surgery, a spokesman for the Hall County Sheriff’s Office said.

Deputy Joe Groover, 35, underwent a surgical procedure that repaired some of the skin on his right forearm Thursday, Hall County Maj. Jeff Strickland said.

Groover, who was shot in an Aug. 11 standoff in Lula, has been in Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta since the incident, but has been out of the hospital’s intensive care unit since Aug. 13.

Groover, a member of the Hall County SWAT Team, is a three-year veteran of the sheriff’s office.

Strickland said when he visited Groover on Tuesday, Groover "was resting pretty comfortably, but he was still on pain medication."

Groover still faces more surgery to repair the damage a bullet from a .44 Magnum did to his right arm in the Lula standoff.

"He still has several other surgeries ahead of him and extensive physical therapy," Strickland said.

He was the only deputy injured in an Aug. 11 hourslong standoff between deputies and a Lula man who had been seen carrying a revolver in downtown Lula. Hubert Stanley Tate allegedly pointed the gun at an off-duty Gainesville police officer before the officer called for backup.

During the standoff, the Hall County SWAT Team surrounded Tate’s camper van in an attempt to negotiate, police said. Tate repeatedly fired and reloaded his revolver from inside his camper van, and one of his bullets passed through Groover’s right arm, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

After he was hit, Groover was flown to Grady Memorial Hospital, and has since undergone three surgeries.

Tate, 65, was killed by a gunshot to the head fired by a SWAT Team member from outside the camper.



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