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News Nearby: Family Sues After Mother Killed by Deputies; Arson Fire Damages House

Check out these top Patch headlines from around the region.

 - Cartersville Patch

Two years after Holli Gooch was shot and killed by police in her Cartersville home after allegedly wielded a hammer, her family has filed a federal lawsuit asking a jury to determine damages at trial.

Gooch was shot when a group of Bartow County Sheriff's Office deputies and a Cartersville Police Department officer entered her home in an attempt to arrest armed robbery suspect Jeremy Starr Prather.

The lawsuit, filed by Gooch's parents on behalf of her estate and two children, ages 2 and 10, claims police entered the home in violation of the Fourth Amendment. See Cartersville Patch for more on this story.

Arson Fire Damages Vacant House - Duluth Patch

Gwinnett County Fire investigators have determined arson to be the cause of an overnight fire at a vacant house in Duluth, according to Gwinnett Fire Capt. Tommy Rutledge in an updated media release.

The blaze was reported to 911 by a neighbor shortly after 2 a.m. Firefighters found active fire in the basement, with flames burning a hole through the floor on the main-level. No one was at the house when fire crews arrived, and no injuries were reported.

"This is now an active arson case," said Rutledge. See Duluth Patch for more on this story.

 - Lilburn-Mountain Park Patch

Officials believe a fireplace sparked a blaze that left a family – two residents and two cats – unharmed, according to a press statement.

Firefighters responded to the 1000 block of Park Forest Drive in Lilburn about 12:25 a.m. on Nov. 19.

Initially, one of the residents tried to douse the flames with a water hose, but he was unsuccessful, according to a press statement sent from Capt. Tommy Rutledge. Before firefighters arrived, the female resident ran back inside to save the two family cats. See Lilburn-Mountain Park Patch for more on this story.

Court Overturns Death Penalty in Lithonia Murders - Stone Mountain-Lithonia Patch

The Georgia Supreme Court threw out a death penalty sentence for Clayton Jerrod Ellington, who was convicted of killing his wife and 2-year-old twin sons, the Atlanta Journal Constitution and other media reported. 

The case will go back for a new sentencing trial after the court upheld the murder conviction, the AJC reported.

Ellington in 2008 was sentenced to die for the 2006 murders of his wife, Berna, 31, and two sons, Christian and Cameron. The three were killed by hammer blows. See Stone Mountain-Lithonia Patch for more on this story.


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