Sergeant Hoyt Keith Teasley

Sergeant Hoyt Keith Teasley

Fulton County Sheriff's Office, Georgia

End of Watch Friday, March 11, 2005

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Hoyt Keith Teasley

Sergeant Hoyt Teasley was shot and killed when he pursued a suspect who had just murdered a Superior Court judge, a court reporter and seriously wounded a deputy in the Fulton County Courthouse.

The suspect was in a holding cell in the newer courthouse building. He was changing from his jail jumpsuit to civilian clothes for a trial when he suddenly attacked the lone deputy who was watching him. He overpowered and severely beat the deputy, then stole her service weapon and radio. Instead of fleeing, the suspect then walked through the sky bridge to the older courthouse building where his trial was to be held. He entered the private chambers of the presiding judge and demanded to see him.

One of the judge's staff hit the panic button to summon assistance. The responding deputy was disarmed at gunpoint and then handcuffed with his own handcuffs. The suspect then stole that deputy's weapon as well and entered the 8th-floor courtroom where the judge was presiding over an unrelated case. Once in the courtroom, the suspect shot and killed the judge and court stenographer.

He was pursued out of the building by Sergeant Teasley, who was shot in the abdomen several times on Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. The suspect then committed several carjackings before he disappeared.

Sergeant Teasley, who was not wearing a vest, was transported to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead a short time later. The wounded deputy suffered serious wounds but is expected to recover.

That evening he confronted Special Agent David Wilhelm, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Atlanta Field Office of the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement Department, in Agent Wilhelm's home. It is believed that Agent Wilhelm recognized the man as being wanted for the earlier murders. Once the suspect identified Agent Wilhelm as a federal agent, he shot and killed him before stealing his service weapon, badge, and personal vehicle.

The suspect fled in Agent Wilhelm's vehicle to an apartment complex in the general area. Once there, he forced a woman into her apartment and held her hostage for several hours before letting her go. The woman immediately called 911, and responding SWAT officers took the man into custody after a brief standoff.

The suspect was sentenced to four consecutive life sentences in December 2008.

Sergeant Teasley had served with the Fulton County Sheriff's Department for 18 years. He is survived by his wife and two children.


  • Age 43
  • Tour 18 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to life

foot pursuit, murder suspect

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