The wife of a slain man who killed a Clayton County cop was convicted of murder Monday and will spend the rest of her life in prison.
A jury found Lisa Ann Lebis guilty of felony murder – or being a party to a crime – for the December 2012 shooting death of Clayton County Police Officer Sean Callahan.
“I firmly believe in my heart that if she had not helped, Sean Callahan would be alive,” Clayton County District Attorney Tracey Graham Lawson told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Lebis, who also was convicted of officer battery, possession of an illegal weapon, firearms possession by a convicted felon and obstruction, was sentenced to life in prison without parole plus 35 years.
Lawson said Lebis was sheltering her husband, Tremaine Lynn Lebis, who was wanted by police, at the Stockbridge motel where the incident occurred.
“I believe they were hiding out in the room,” Lawson said. “She had the room in her son’s name. And she was the only one who dealt with the front desk.”
Prosecutors said Lisa Lebis knew her husband had three guns and knives in the room and that “he said he was never going back to prison again.”
Callahan, 24 and a rookie cop, was one of the officers who responded to the call of a domestic dispute that night at the Stockbridge motel.
“She was all cooperative until they started to arrest her husband,” Lawson said. “She helped him get away. That’s when her husband led (officers) down the ambush path.”
Tremaine Lebis opened fire on Callahan and Officer Waymondo Brown, prosecutors said. Officers returned fire and fatally struck Tremaine Lebis, authorities said.
But Callahan was hit and fell off a 10-foot ledge, prosecutors said.
Brown, a reserve U.S. Coast Guard medic, left the fallen Tremaine Lebis and his weapon and rushed to Callahan’s side to attempt to help.
Lawson said Lisa Lebis approached Brown, frantically shouting obscenities and causing Brown to fear that she was armed.
“She was interfering with the officer’s life-saving efforts,” Lawson said. “He didn’t know if she had her husband’s gun, and kept telling her to show her hands. That took at least a minute, and the first five minutes are critical.”
Brown was unable to save Callahan, making Callahan the first Clayton County police officer to die from a shooting, authorities said.
“I will continue to ensure that my department remains mindful of the sacrifice made by Officer Sean Louis Callahan on behalf of his community,” Clayton County Police Chief Greg Porter said Monday in a statement.
Lisa Lebis’ trial ended a week ago, but jury deliberation was dragged out, first by snow and ice, then by the dismissal Friday of a juror.
An alternate juror was seated Friday afternoon when a juror changed his mind after the verdict sheets were signed, and the presiding judge ordered the jury to restart deliberations on Monday, authorities said.