CRIME

Georgia lawmaker, traveling with storm relief money, is shot

FILE -In this Wednesday, Oct. 22, 2003 file photo, Georgia Rep. Gerald Greene, D-Cuthbert.

FILE -In this Wednesday, Oct. 22, 2003 file photo, Georgia Rep. Gerald Greene, D-Cuthbert.  (AP, File)

A Georgia lawmaker is recovering from a gunshot wound after he says he was shot while traveling with several thousand dollars in donations for storm relief efforts.

State Rep. Gerald Greene, 69, had stopped for gas in Columbus when he was shot in the leg Thursday, a spokesman for Georgia House Speaker David Ralston told statehouse reporters.

But Greene told WRBL-TV of Columbus he was in a parking lot behind Foxes Cinema, an adult entertainment store, when he was shot. A news crew from the station found fresh blood on the concrete behind the business, the station reported.

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In an interview, Greene told the station that a man pointed a gun at his chest, demanded money and then shot him. The robber did not get the donations to the American Red Cross he had with him, he said.

Greene, a Republican from Cuthbert in southwest Georgia, was released from a hospital Thursday evening. Phone messages left at his home and at his office by The Associated Press were not immediately returned Friday.

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Greene's hometown is in an area that was ravaged by tornadoes last weekend. Twenty people died across the Southeast, including 15 in Georgia. President Donald Trump has granted assistance for six counties that were severely damaged by the storms on Saturday and Sunday, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal said Thursday.

The American Red Cross' media relations team was looking into the circumstances of the money Green said he was carrying at the time of the shooting, a representative of the organization said Friday morning.

Greene, who had attended Thursday's session of the General Assembly, has been in the House for 34 years and is chairman of the State Properties Committee.