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Gwinnett Fire: Drunk man charged with torching his home, killing cat

A Lawrenceville man has been charged with setting his own home on fire after having an argument with his wife, Gwinnett County Fire and Emergency Services said.

Jose Antonio Ramirez, 37, has been charged with first-degree arson, possession of tools for the commission of a crime and aggravated cruelty to animals.


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Firefighters and police responded to the townhome community in which Ramirez lives on the evening of Feb. 6 after a neighbor called 911, reporting a man trying to enter their screened-in porch. Officers saw a man walking out of some nearby woods. The man, described as “intoxicated” in a fire department release, was identified as Ramirez. 

When officers went to Ramirez’s home, they saw smoke coming from the second floor. Firefighters extinguished the fire shortly after responding and the fire was contained to the living room area. Once firefighters entered the home, they found a dead cat. 

Ramirez’s wife and two children had left the home earlier that evening, after Ramirez and his wife had an argument, the release said. Investigators believe that is the motive for the fire. 

Ramirez is being held at the Gwinnett County Detention Center without bond. 


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