A college student will never walk again after a masked thug shot her in the face and left her for dead in what police believe was a tragic case of mistaken identity.
Jamie Hogland, 19, is paralysed from the shoulders down after a bullet shattered four vertebrae and severed her spinal cord.
She was alone in her apartment in Stephenville, Texas, USA, on December 10 when she responded to a loud knock on the door of her second-floor apartment at 10PM.
The gunman pulled the trigger within seconds of her opening tee door, sending a bullet ripping through her jaw and tearing her spinal cord before fleeing the scene.
Tarleton State University student Jamie feared she would die as she lay conscious on her apartment floor unable to move her arms or legs to call for help.
Stephenville police were called to near the scene after neighbors heard the initial shot, but they could not find any evidence of a shooting.
It wasn’t until 1AM that neighbors heard Jamie’s cries for help and once again alerted the police and emergency services.
Jamie remained in a critical condition in ICU at John Peterson Hospital for two weeks.
Doctors confirmed to her parents Jessica, 38, and Eddie Hogland, 60, that she was paralysed from below the collarbone.
Police tracked down Jamie’s alleged attacker, who has since been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, possession of a controlled substance and possession of marijuana.
Jamie claims officers told her they believe the shooting was a case of mistaken identity over “drug -related issues”.
Jamie, who is now a quadriplegic, said: “I was just watching TV when I heard a bang on the door.
“It was really loud. When I opened the door he was right up against it.
“He was wearing all black and his face was covered – he was wearing a black ski mask.
“I didn’t even have time to register that he was holding a gun because the next thing I knew I was lying on the floor.
“The bullet had gone through my left cheek right above my jaw.
“As I was lying there I could hear my phone ring and I saw it was my mom but I couldn’t move my hand to answer.
“I was paralysed. I tried to tell Siri to call 911 but it wouldn’t work. I laid there for hours. It felt like an eternity.
“I could hear people outside but they couldn’t hear me scream. I came in and out of consciousness.
“As I lay there I was so scared. I couldn’t move my arms. My fingers weren’t working. That’s when I realized it was real. I thought I was going to die there.”
Jamie does not recall the early days in hospital when doctors told her the extent of her injuries but said she has felt despair in the months since her attack.
She embarked on months of outpatient rehabilitation in January 2018, which has helped her to regain the use of her arms.
Positive Jamie is now focusing on moving forward with her life.
The psychology major even hopes to return to college in the fall, but is still haunted by nightmares of her horror attack.
Jamie said: “I have nightmares all the time. They’re so bad. I call out in the middle of the night. I’m working with a psychologist right now because they are so bad.
“But it’s been almost six months now and I just want to get my life back as much as I can – too much of it has already been taken from me.
“I’m hoping to go back to school in the fall and start to move on with my life.
“I would have never been able to get through this without my parents though. They’ve adapted their house for me and have been my rock through everything.”
Jamie said she hopes to one day reach a point where she can forgive the man who changed her life.
She said: “One day I hope to get there, but I’m still in shock and too confused to forgive right now.
“I feel like my life was completely turned upside down and I need time to heal and recover.”
To donate to Jamie’s campaign visit https://www.gofundme.com/help-jamie-richards-heal
* Shawn Patrick Layton, 26, is being held in Erath County Jail with bail set at $805,000 charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, possession of a controlled substance and possession of marijuana.