By Dina Kaplan
(LOUISVILLE, June 18th, 2004, 12:05
p.m.) -- The husband of the woman shot
by a Louisville Metro police officer Wednesday
blames police for not picking her up
sooner when they confronted
her earlier in the day. WAVE 3's Dina
People who spent time with Gale
Thomason say she did not act like
herself the day she was shot in the thigh
while being arrested on a Mental Inquest Warrant
June 16. They say she had violently
attacked people earlier in the day, and
that when police had a chance to arrest her they
let her drive away.
The alleged attack happened Wednesday morning
at the Bahama Bay Tanning Salon in the 5000
block of Stephan Drive. One employee says
that, normally, Gale is "the nicest
customer I have."
Stephen Waddill says Gale showed up drunk,
then lunged at him. "Gale is a nice person,
I have nothing against her. "But that
morning I was attacked."
Witnesses say her next target was a
customer who was wearing a cross on a necklace.
"She made three steps toward her and then lunged
to get it and I quote: 'I want that cross
off of there now.'"
Waddil says he called police and
two officers arrived, but refused to arrest
Thomason. He says police said "the only
thing I can tell you is if she comes
back, lock the door."
Waddil says Thomason then called
him repeatedly when she got home.
Later that day, when police tried to execute an
outstanding Mental Inquest Warrant, they
say she attacked an officer with a
knife and was eventually shot in the
At 5-foot-5-inches, Thomas weighs about 120
pounds and has run marathons. Her husband, Wayne
Thomason, says officers should have allowed
her to cool down inside the apartment. And he
blames police for letting her get
away earlier in the day. "They had her
once and they let her go."
He admits his wife is troubled -- it
was Wayne who took out the Mental
Inquest Warrant, hoping she would be placed in a
hospital. Wayne also says Gale had just begun
taking the anti-depressant Lexapro, and the drug
made Gale act irrationally.
But the bottle is clearly marked with a
warning not to combine the drug with alcohol.
Police spokesman Dwight Mitchell says an
investigation is continuing. When asked if
officers should have run a check for outstanding
warrants after receiving complaints about
her from the tanning salon, he said decisions
like that are made on a "case by case
Gale Thomason does have a criminal
background, including 16 counts of wanton
endangerment, and a charge for biting her
husband on Christmas eve in 2002.