Mother says son who was killed after firing at trooper had shot her in face, killed grandmother

SOUTH FULTON COUNTY, Ga. — A mother whose son was killed by police is describing how he shot her and then killed his grandmother.

Channel 2′s Tom Jones spoke to Ava Fitzpatrick from her hospital bed, where she is recovering.

“I was like ‘TJ ... Where my momma at?’ You know? And he picked up the gun off the seat and started shooting at me three times,” Fitzpatrick said.

She told Jones that her son, Terrell Gas, 36, whom she called TJ, shot her in the face Tuesday.

Fitzpatrick said she learned later that Gas killed her mother, his grandmother, at their Lithonia home.

She told Jones that she can’t begin to understand why he would take Lorene Nealous’ life because he loved her and she loved him.

“Anything he want, he would want to go to Family Dollar. She always took him. That’s why I can’t understand why would he do that to her,” Fitzpatrick said.


A fugitive squad began searching for Gas following the shooting. They located him in College Park on Wednesday afternoon.

Georgia State Patrol troopers said he began firing at officers on the Interstate 85 north exit to Riverdale Road.

Troopers then fired back, hitting Gas multiple times.

Gas was rushed to a nearby hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.

A trooper was also taken to the hospital with a minor injury. They are expected to be OK.

“So you never saw a violent side of him?” Jones asked Fitzpatrick.

“I never saw this coming. Never,” Fitzpatrick said.

Fitzpatrick said her son was mentally ill. She said she tried getting him help on many occasions but got nowhere.

Fitzpatrick said her son refused to take his medications, saying he was OK.

She said she never thought he would turn violent against his family.

“I just want to really get in his face and be like, ‘Why would you do your mom, your grandmom like that? She helped you TJ.’ I just want to ask him why would you do her like that,” Fitzpatrick said.

Fitzpatrick said she saw that her son had been shot and killed on the news. She is now advocating for more help for the mentally ill, including more funding and more facilities.

She told Jones that she felt like she had nowhere to turn to help her son.