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Suspect pleads not guilty, faces death penalty in Hoschton murder, arson

POSTED: April 28, 2008 5:00 a.m.
JEFFERSON — The man who faces the death
penalty for killing and burning his children, their mother and grandmother in Hoschton pleaded not guilty on Thursday.

Henry Lee Stringer, 34, entered his plea in Jackson County Superior Court. He faces multiple charges of murder, aggravated assault, aggravated battery, cruelty to children and arson.

The case is far from trial, as there are 50 to 100 pretrial motions that will be filed in the next 90 days, public defender Joseph W. Vigneri said Thursday. The defense also has not finished collecting and reviewing evidence in the case.

Stringer’s other attorney, Christian G. Lamar, has said he plans to challenge the grand jury’s indictment. Stringer was indicted Dec. 3 on charges of murder, aggravated assault, aggravated battery, cruelty to children and arson.

It was the second indictment returned by a grand jury since Stringer’s arrest.

Stringer is accused of killing Evelyn Strickland, 68, her daughter, Marvelette J’Laine Strickland, 29, and Marvelette and Stringer’s two children, 4-year-old J’Majuan Stringer and 2-year-old J’Lasia Stringer.

Authorities said the women were stabbed to death and the children died of smoke inhalation after a fire was set at the yellow house on Pendergrass Road in Hoschton on May 30, 2006. The case went a year without an arrest before Stringer was charged June 1, 2007.

Stringer is being held without bond at the Barrow County Detention Center.



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