GBI: Man killed in exchange of gunfire with Cobb police at Mableton home

Credit: John Spink /

Credit: John Spink /

A man was killed at a Mableton home Thursday night after state officials said he engaged in two bouts of gunfire with Cobb County police officers.

The officers responded to the home on Hicks Road about 8:30 p.m. after getting calls that the man, identified by the GBI as 23-year-old Tavis Latimore Carithers of Mableton, was suicidal and had a gun. According to Cobb police Chief Stuart VanHoozer, Carithers was firing inside the residence, “presumably at family members.”

The newly minted police chief, in a Friday morning media briefing from the scene, said his officers were met with gunfire on arrival, and they returned fire.

Rapid and continual gunfire can be heard in videos taken by neighbors and shared with Channel 2 Action News.

VanHoozer said a SWAT team was called in when the man retreated into the home. In another video taken by a neighbor, officers can be heard communicating with the man using a loudspeaker and asking him if he needed medical attention.

At some point during the standoff, Carithers left the house and stepped into the garage, where he again fired at officers, according to the GBI.

They returned fire, striking him, a GBI spokesperson said in a news release. Carithers was found dead inside the garage.

Credit: John Spink /

Credit: John Spink /

VanHoozer said no one else was injured during the incident, including children inside the home, Channel 2 reported.

Hicks Road was closed between Concord and Bates roads while investigators were on scene Friday. The road reopened about 6:15 a.m.

It is the 51st officer-involved shooting the GBI has been asked to investigate this year. That tally includes eight police shootings in metro Atlanta since April 29.

Last year, Georgia did not encounter its 50th officer-involved shooting until June 30, according to the GBI.

The shooting in Cobb came little more than 24 hours after Atlanta police fatally shot 22-year-old Nygil Cullins at Fogo de Chao, a Brazilian steakhouse in Buckhead. According to the GBI, Cullins opened fire on officers during a confrontation inside the restaurant, striking a security guard at least once. Cullins was killed by return fire.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution also tracks officer-involved shootings that don’t involve the GBI, and those numbers sometimes differ from the GBI’s tally.

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