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Mableton man arrested for starting fire at girlfriend’s home that killed two people, 5 cats, and a dog


A Mableton man has been arrested for arson and murder after starting a fire at a home his girlfriend lived at on Janet Lane, off Veterans Memorial Highway. 

Robert Colt Smith, 30, is accused by police of starting a vehicle fire that spread, causing the death of two people and six animals.

The Cobb County Police Department said Michele LaCroix, 74, and Andrea Nall, 52 died as a result of the fire. 

In their statement, police said that both Cobb police and Cobb Fire and Emergency Services responded to a reported fire on Sunday, March 12 around 5:34 a.m. 

Firefighters found and removed LaCroix and Nall from inside the burning home. They were taken to Wellstar Cobb Hospital and eventually died.

Also killed in the fire were five cats and a dog. According to arrest warrants, police believe the fire began when Smith set fire to a 2002 Honda CRV parked near the house on Janet Lane. According to the warrants, the fire spread to the home and also spread to a nearby 2006 Ford Freestar, which was also destroyed.

In a separate incident, Smith is also facing assault and battery charges. He is accused of attacking his girlfriend on two occasions in February, on the 13, and again on the 26. 

The girlfriend lived at the home which burned down with the victims, LaCroix and Nall. Police accused Smith of attacking his girlfriend. In both incidents, the girlfriend says she was left bleeding, had bruises on her face and body, and had her eyes punched to the point they were swollen shut. 

The victim says these injuries occurred at the hands of Smith. The victim also claimed that Smith strangled her “to the point she nearly lost consciousness” at a home off Whitlock Avenue in Marietta.

Cobb police, Cobb Fire and Emergency Services, and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives all investigated Smith. 

For the fire, Smith has been charged with two counts of murder, three counts of arson, and aggravated cruelty to animals. For the two incidents in February, he faces aggravated assault and aggravated battery charges. 

According to jail records, Smith was arrested on Sunday, March 19. He is being held at the Cobb jail and is not eligible for bond.


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