Gwinnett County Fire Investigators have made two arrests in connection with the arson fire at Pepperoni’s Duluth Alehouse, located in the 2870 block of Peachtree Industrial Boulevard, NW in Duluth.   Firefighters responded to the fire on Jan. 2 at 12:21 a.m., after smoke from the fire activated the alarm in a neighboring business.  The fire was already out when crews arrived and caused moderate damage inside the restaurant.  The fire was quenched by a melted water line to a nearby fountain drink machine.

Through subsequent investigation, inconsistencies surfaced in the information that was being provided by business owner Delilah Marie Smith, age-57 of Duluth and her live-in boyfriend Jerome Walker, age-46 of Duluth.  According to Fire Investigators, financial woes may be a substantial motive in the case.   “Both are being charged with one-count each of First-Degree Arson and Tools for the Commission of a Crime,” said Gwinnett Fire Captain Tommy Rutledge.  Fire Investigators are not releasing specific information about the evidence found or the inconsistencies, but did obtain sufficient probable cause to secure felony arrest warrants charging the business owner and her boyfriend. 

Fire Investigators took Smith and Walker into custody separately on Friday evening, Jan. 5.  Both were booked at the Gwinnett County Detention Center and are currently being held without bond. 



(Duluth, Ga., January 2, 2017) – Gwinnett County Fire Investigators say that someone  intentionally set a fire inside the Pepperoni’s Duluth Alehouse in the 2870 block of Peachtree Industrial Boulevard, NW in Duluth.

Firefighters responded on Tuesday, January 2, 2017 at 12:21 a.m., to a report of a fire alarm activated in an adjoining business suite within the strip retail plaza.  Fire crews were trying to locate the source of smoke that prompted the alarm in the neighboring business, when they discovered an odor and haze of smoke inside the restaurant.  The fire was already out when firefighters gained access and was extinguished by a melted water line on a fountain drink machine.

According to Fire Investigators, sufficient evidence was found at the scene to indicate that someone set a fire inside the restaurant in order to destroy the property.  Fire Investigators collected samples of the fire debris to send to the lab to confirm whether accelerant was used to ignite the fire.  Specific information about the evidence found at the scene or how the fire was set is not being released due to the ongoing investigation.

“We are fortunate that the restaurant and surrounding businesses were closed at the time and that no one was injured or killed,” said Gwinnett Fire Captain Tommy Rutledge.   “The crime of arson is a bold act, and those responsible will be held accountable,” Rutledge added.   Arson is a serious felony crime and is punishable by one to 20-years imprisonment and associated fines.

Anyone with information about the fire is asked to contact the Gwinnett Fire Investigations Section at 678-518-4890 or the Georgia Arson Control Hotline at 1-800-282-5804.  Georgia Arson Control, Inc. offers a reward of UP TO $10,000 for information leading to an arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible for arson.                    

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