Update: Parents of child killed in arson fire indicted on felony murder charges

15-year-old brother started fire with children in the home

The Loganville couple charged with cruelty to children following the death of their 10-year-old daughter, Zoe McCue, in an arson fire in their Loganville home in April 2022 have now been indicted on felony murder charges.

William McCue, 47, and Carina McCue, 38, have been charged with three counts of felony murder, two counts of cruelty to children in the first degree, one count of aggravated assault and one count of false imprisonment.

According to the indictment, the couple allegedly subjected the five minor children to a series of physical abuse, including depriving them of running water and forcing them to use the toilet in buckets in their bedrooms. The were also allegedly forced to stand for long periods of time on cinderblocks without bathroom breaks and enduring whippings if they collapsed. There are also allegations of electric shock collars and being deprived of necessary sustenance to the detriment of their well being. They were reportedly isolated from their siblings and the child who died had been locked in a bathroom with a makeshift bed when the fire was set.

The couple were recently denied bond in Gwinnett County Superior Court due to a risk of flight. They had disappeared following the fire that killed Zoe after her 15-year-old brother had allegedly intentionally set the fire. The 15-year-old also faces charges of murder and arson in the death of his sister. At this time the charges are pending in superior court but have not yet been indicted. He had admitted to starting the fire after being found at a Rockdale County church the following day. He was subsequently taken into custody on murder and arson charges.

Update 1: (Lawrenceville, Ga., June 29, 2022) – The Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Office Fugitive Unit arrested William Linn McCue, 47, and Carina Wisniewski McCue, 38, both of Loganville, in connection with the child cruelty charges following the death of one of their children in a fire and an arrest of another for starting the fire.

According to a press release from Gwinnett County Police Department, the investigation led the detectives to the Appalachian Trail. The McCue’s were arrested and transported to the Gwinnett Police Department where they were interviewed by Special Victim Unit detectives. GCPD report that both have been charged with Cruelty to Children. They are being held without bond.

Gwinnett Police seek public’s help in locating them

From left: William Linn McCue, 47, and Carina Wisniewski McCue, 38, of Loganville. Contributed photo

Update

(Lawrenceville, Ga., May 6, 2022) – Gwinnett County Police Special Victims Unit is asking for the public’s assistance in locating William Linn McCue, 47, and Carina Wisniewski McCue, 38, of Loganville. The couple has disappeared following a house fire last month that resulted in the death of their 10-year-old daughter. Their 15-year-old son has been charged with arson and murder in connection with his sister’s death. Both parents have been charged with Cruelty to Children 1st, and 2nd Degree and False Imprisonment following the investigation into the fire.

According to a press release from GCPD, during the Arson investigation regarding the fire, given the conditions of the house and the location where the deceased juvenile victim was found, it was determined that the children might be victims of Cruelty to Children and a separate investigation was initiated against the parents. 

Arson and SVU investigators allegedly found unsanitary and dangerous living conditions in the home. They located a makeshift bed with bedding in the bathtub in the bathroom where the body of the 10-year-old was found. The investigators also located improvised camping-style toilet seat buckets and non-usable toilets with septic tanks not working or full. In addition, the kitchen sink had been re-plumbed for the water from the faucet to go into a five-gallon bucket sitting on the floor and the showers and bathtubs did not appear to be functioning.

Police report that attempts to locate the parents for interviews have not been successful. Their last known location was Hometown Suites, 1775 N. Brown Road in Lawrenceville and they were last seen driving a 2017 white Honda Accord (Ga Tag CHB7385) around I85N and Oakbrook Parkways in Norcross.

If anyone has any information to share in this case, please contact GCPD detectives at 770-513-5300.  To remain anonymous, tipsters should contact Crime Stoppers at 404-577-TIPS (8477) or visit www.stopcrimeATL.com.  Crime Stoppers tipsters can receive a cash reward for information leading to an arrest and indictment in this case. 

Update

(Loganville, Ga. April 18, 2022 – The Gwinnett County Police Department announced that a 15-year-old boy from Loganville has been arrested and charged with malice and felony murder in connection with the residential fire that left his 10-year-old sister dead. Police say an additional charge of Arson in the 1st Degree expected.

Gwinnett Police believe the fire was set intentionally by a sibling

Update by Gwinnett County Police

Loganville, Ga., (April 17, 2022) – The Gwinnett County Police Department responded to residential fire in Loganville early Sunday morning along with Gwinnett County Fire. The residential fire within the 4400 block of Beaver Road SW, unincorporated Loganville was reported at 4:47 a.m. Once fire crews were able to successfully control the fire, the body of a 10-year-old female victim was found inside the burned home. Gwinnett Fire Department Arson Investigators determined the fire was set intentionally. 

At this time, Gwinnett County detectives have determined the fire was set intentionally by a sibling of the deceased victim. This is still an active investigation and is being treated as a Homicide. Gwinnett Police detectives are working closely with arson investigators throughout the duration of this investigation.

Update by Fire and Emergency Service

(Loganville, Ga., April 17, 2022) – Firefighters responded at 4:57 a.m. to an occupant report of a house fire in the 4400 block of Beaver Road SW in unincorporated Loganville. The 911 caller advised there was a fire in front of the house, and she was trying to get the kids. Additional information advised two kids were outside with the caller and two kids were still inside the house. Due to the information provided, additional units were requested and started towards the scene.

On arrival, firefighters found a single-story residence on a slab with heavy fire involvement throughout the front of the structure. A walk-around of the structure was completed while hose lines were deployed through the tree line to the front of the home. While crews worked to get a knockdown, multiple crews arriving on scene began performing Vent-Enter-Search (VES) which focuses searches on tenable locations for victims primarily utilizing exterior window access. Multiple aggressive search attempts were executed to locate the missing children. After the fire was brought under control, a 10-year-old female victim was located deceased in room used as a bedroom without window access. Efforts continued for the next couple hours to sift through debris to locate the 15-year-old male that was believed to be inside. Around 9 a.m., the 15-year-old was located away from the scene and appeared to be okay. The home sustained extensive fire damage throughout the front half of the structure including the attic. Two cats were also found deceased inside the home.

A total of seven people lived at the home including two adults and five children. One adult and four children were at home when the fire broke out. According to a family member, smoke alarms are installed in the home, but they did not activate. Gwinnett County Police Chaplains and the American Red Cross are assisting the family with temporary needs for the two adults, four children and two dogs.

Gwinnett County Fire and Emergency Services

Update

Media outlets are reporting that the second child, a 15-year-old, initially reported as missing has since been located safe at another house. We are awaiting further details from authorities.

Initial story

LOGANVILLE, GA – (April 17, 2022) Gwinnett County Fire and Emergency Rescue reports that firefighters responded at 4:57 a.m. to a reported house fire in the 4400 block of Beaver Road SW in Loganville.

GCFER public information officer Lt. Justin Wilson said that crews arrived on scene with heavy fire involvement in a one-story residence and reports of two missing children. At the time of the media alert, one victim has been located and was deceased. He said firefighters would continue to search for the second victim.

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