Victim in Texas Parade Crash Accused of Lying - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: |

Victim in Texas Parade Crash Accused of Lying

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Staff Report
The Associated Press/NewsWest 9

CHEROKEE COUNTY, GA. - Authorities say an ex-police officer from Georgia who was injured in a train accident during a veteran's parade in Texas lied about receiving a Purple Heart medal and has been arrested.

41-year-old Shane Ladner was arrested on Wednesday in Georgia for lying.

You'll remember both he and his wife were injured in the veteran's parade float accident in Midland.

Ladner now faces multiple charges.

NewsWest 9 received a copy of the incident report from the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office in Georgia where it outlines the reasons why Shane Ladner was arrested.

Through their department's investigation, they found Ladner was not a Purple Heart recipient.

He was arrested and charged with four counts of theft by deception, one count of false swearing and one count of false statement to a police officer.

Investigators say Ladner applied for a free Purple Heart license plate in 2009 and swore he was a Purple Heart recipient and he also lied during an interview with deputies.

Ladner was booked into the Cherokee Adult Detention Center with a $23,100 bond and has since bonded out.
Ladner and his wife, Meg, were among those injured in the November train crash in Midland.

His wife lost a leg in the accident.

They are part of a group of veterans suing Union Pacific and Smith Industries, whose worker was driving the parade float.

Ladner's attorney, John Cook, released a statement saying in part, "We are confident in our ability to defend Shane against these charges and plan to do so. All along, our investigation has shown that, in fact, Shane did receive a purple heart for injuries received in service to his country."

NewsWest 9 spoke to Cherokee County's Sheriff's Department about what sparked the whole investigation.

We'll have more details on this story coming up tonight on NewsWest 9 at 10 p.m.