Official: As fire spread, accused arsonist left home with cats, went to Walmart

A woman charged with 14 counts of first-degree arson had just lost her house in a divorce when she started a fire that destroyed or damaged 20 homes in Paulding County, authorities said Tuesday.

According to the state insurance and safety fire commissioner’s office, Adrienne Satterly was in the process of leaving her home when she set a pile of mattresses on fire in the dining room.

Adrienne Satterly faces 14 counts of arson in connection with a fire in Paulding County. (Credit: Paulding County Sheriff’s Office)

Satterly left the Rosemont Court house with her two cats and walked to a Walmart on Jimmy Lee Smith Parkway before calling 911 about 3:25 a.m. Sunday, office spokesman Glenn Allen told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

In 911 audio obtained Tuesday by The AJC, Satterly never mentioned a fire. She told a dispatcher she had a “kitty cat and a suitcase” and asked if someone could pick her up from Walmart.

“Where do you need them to go?” the dispatcher asked.

“To Greystone,” Satterly said. “By the hospital.”

She gave the dispatcher the address of her home in the Greystone subdivision in Hiram, but said she had been ordered to leave the residence due to a case.

It’s not clear from the audio if authorities ever picked up Satterly and took her home.

By the time fire crews got to her neighborhood, the blaze had spread from Satterly’s home to 19 others.

The fire destroyed four of them, significantly damaged two more and left 14 others with varying degrees of heat and smoke damage.  

The damage is estimated to surpass $1 million, officials said.

Four homes were destroyed and 16 others were damaged in a fire in Paulding County. (Credit: Channel 2 Action News)

Everyone got out of their homes safely, but one man suffered a minor ankle injury, authorities said. 

A cat and two dogs from two neighboring homes died, prompting officials to also charge Satterly with three counts of aggravated animal cruelty, according to Allen.

Before she was formally charged with arson and animal cruelty, Satterly was arrested on unrelated public drunkenness charges.

RELATED: Woman arrested on public drunkenness following Paulding arson

She is being held in the Paulding County jail without bond.

“This suspect committed a heinous act that threatened the lives of her neighbors and our first responders,” deputy commissioner Jay Florence said.

ALSO: Into the fire: AJC photographer goes into the flames

Four homes were destroyed and 16 others were damaged in a fire in Paulding County. (Credit: Paulding County Fire and Rescue)

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