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2 Jan 1994: Offensive lineman Gerald Perry of the Los Angeles Raiders looks on during a playoff game against the Denver Broncos at the Coliseum in Los Angeles, California. The Raiders won the game in overtime, 33-30. Mandatory Credit: Mike Powell /Alls
Gerald Perry, the Oakland Raiders' starting offensive tackle back in the Jeff Hostetler-Tim Brown-Rocket Ismail era, is listed in moderate condition after being shot at a car wash outside Atlanta. Witnesses told WSB TV in Atlanta that Perry was shot for refusing to hand over money.
Perry was reportedly washing his SUV at car wash in suburban Atlanta when accosted by a female suspect. When Perry refused a demand for money, she grabbed her armed male accomplice.
They did not realize they were shaking down an eight-year NFL offensive lineman.
Words were shared, and the male suspect fired shots at Perry. "The only thing that really saved him was that he put his hand up and the bullet is still in his hand," an eyewitness told WSB TV.
Ironically, Perry was known to locals as exceptionally generous with his NFL pension. "He's a hard giving person," a friend told WSB. "He sits down and gives anybody money because he has an open heart since he can't play ball anymore. He said that's what God asked him to do."
DeKalb police are continuing the search for the two suspects, who got away. Our thoughts go out to Gerald Perry for a speedy recovery.
Joe Kukura is a freelance writer who would love nothing more than for Jim Rockford or McCloud to come out of retirement to solve this one.