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Posted: August 5, 2009 12:30 a.m.

Deputies shot in stand-off

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Atha

Two Newton County Sheriff’s Office deputies remain in stable condition after being shot Monday afternoon.

Deputies James Trent, 50, and 25-year-old Wesley Atha were both shot when they responded to a suicide threat at a home on Parker Road at around 5 p.m. When they arrived, they were shot outside of the home. Trent, who has more than nine years of law enforcement service, was shot in the jaw and the bullet exited his neck. Atha, who has served in law enforcement for more than two years, was shot in the arm and the back. Both men were rushed to Atlanta Medical Center.

Covington/Newton County SWAT Team members converged on the home and reportedly saw movement inside the residence. After a four-hour stand-off during which time SWAT members shot gas into the residence and attempted to speak with the alleged shooter through phone and PA system, they entered the residence and found 20-year-old Thomas Powell in a bedroom, dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is currently working on the investigation alongside the NCSO. An autopsy for Powell is scheduled to be conducted today. According to NCSO PIO Lt. Tyrone Oliver, the GBI was called in to investigate as a neutral party, since NCSO deputies were involved.

"Since it is an ongoing investigation there is very little we can comment on at this point," said GBI Spokesman John Bankhead.

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