For weeks residents in the North Hall county area remained anxious even as they pressured officers for answers after a woman reported being stabbed and raped by an intruder.
But on Wednesday, investigators said it was all a lie and that they have arrested the woman.
Ms. Jillian Shea Moore, 24, was charged with false report of a crime and making a false statement after claiming she was attacked on July 31, according to the Hall County Sheriff’s Office.
Still it’s unclear why she allegedly lied.
Around 9 a.m. that Wednesday, deputies responded to Ms. Moore’s home in the 5700 block of Avalon Commons Way in Clermont after getting a report that the woman had been sexually assaulted, the sheriff’s spokesman Sgt. Stephen Wilbanks said.
When they arrived, deputies discovered the woman suffering from a minor stab wound to her abdomen.
“She reported that she had been raped and stabbed by a masked black male in her home, who then stole jewelry items and fled the scene,” Sgt. Wilbanks said.
She was transported to Northeast Georgia Medical Center where she was treated for a non-life threatening injury.
But with the help of GBI agents, investigators said they learned that Ms. Moore was not the victim of a crime and that her stab wound was self-inflicted.
The incident received a great deal of attention in the North Hall and Gainesville area with many residents on edge about their safety and the lack of information about the case, officials said.
But the sheriff said there was a need for caution.
“It’s important to understand that we walk a very fine line in cases like this,” Sheriff Gerald Couch said in an emailed statement. “On one hand we have to ensure that we’re protecting a person presumed to be the victim of a terrible crime by pursuing all leads and seeking to bring the perpetrator to justice, while ensuring the safety of the community at large.
“On the other hand, if the facts lead us to believe that the case is unfounded we have to properly establish that while reassuring citizens that their community is safe.”
He stressed the need for a thorough investigation for the sake of the alleged victim and the community.
“In this case the evidence indicates that Jillian Moore’s allegations are false, so it now becomes our legal obligation to hold her accountable for that,” Sheriff Couch said. “This has been an unfortunate situation for her and her family, as well as the local residents, and it’s our hope that we will all soon be able to move forward as a community.”
Ms. Moore has been released on $6,000 bond, Sgt. Wilbanks said.
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