Retired Atlanta judge dies after car wreck on I-75 in Cobb

Retired Atlanta Municipal Judge Elaine Carlisle, seen in this April 19, 2001 photo, was sitting on the bench when members of the House of Prayer church were ordered to stand trial on child cruelty charges. Boys ages 7 and 10 told police they were beaten under the pastor’s direction  while adults held their arms and suspended them in midair.
Caption
Retired Atlanta Municipal Judge Elaine Carlisle, seen in this April 19, 2001 photo, was sitting on the bench when members of the House of Prayer church were ordered to stand trial on child cruelty charges. Boys ages 7 and 10 told police they were beaten under the pastor’s direction while adults held their arms and suspended them in midair.

Credit: Bita Honarvar

Credit: Bita Honarvar

A retired Atlanta Municipal Court judge died Friday after a car wreck with another vehicle on I-75, officials said.

Elaine Carlisle, 65, died at Wellstar Kennestone Hospital after she was injured in the crash, which happened shortly after noon, according to the Georgia State Patrol.

Carlisle was driving a silver Mercedes C300 on I-285 to the entrance ramp of I-75 South, officials said. For reasons that are not known, her vehicle failed to maintain its lane and left the roadway, according to GSP.

The Mercedes crossed a grass median and drove into the lanes of I-75 South. It was then hit on driver’s side by a white Chevrolet Express van, sending the Mercedes across all of the southbound lanes and into a concrete median wall. Carlisle suffered a serious head injury in the wreck, authorities said.

The driver of the Chevrolet van, identified as 38-year-old Freddie Hodge of Douglasville, suffered chest pains from airbag deployment. He was treated at the same hospital.

Carlisle retired in 2016, nearly three decades after ex-Mayor Andrew Young appointed her to the Atlanta Municipal Court in 1989.

During Carlisle's time on the bench, she denied NFL star Ray Lewis' request for bond following a deadly knife fight in Buckhead the night of the 2000 Super Bowl. Lewis, who initially faced murder charges, eventually pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of obstruction of justice after striking a plea bargain with prosecutors.

In 2001, Carlisle presided over another high-profile case, ordering members of a northwest Atlanta church to stand trial on child cruelty charges. Boys ages 7 and 10 told police they were beaten under the direction of the pastor of House of Prayer church while adults held their arms and suspended them in midair. The case made national headlines, and the pastor as well as four members of the church were ultimately convicted of the charges.

In a statement, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said her thoughts are with Carlisle’s loved ones.

“Judge Carlisle truly had a servant’s heart and worked tirelessly to uplift the Atlanta community with her volunteer efforts,” Bottoms said. “Judge Carlisle leaves behind an accomplished career, and the admiration and respect of all those who had the honor of knowing her.”

An investigation into the crash that killed Carlisle is ongoing.

In other news: 

Caption
Riverdale police say Stanley Lawrence, 58, was shot and killed by his wife, Tammare Lawrence, 49, at their home.

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