Updated:DOUGLAS COUNTY, Ga. —
Four men accused of setting fire to the Old Cotton Mill made their first appearance before a judge Wednesday morning.
The historic mill, built in 1908, was destroyed by fire on May 12.
Jeromie Hand, 17, Terry Carringer, 18, and Adrian Bond, 18, are all charged with arson
The suspects’ defense attorney said the men went to the mill to get high by huffing air duster cans, and only set the fire after becoming intoxicated.
“The intention was just to suck on some air duster cans and get high. Their fetish for fire took over,”
The prosecutor argued the men burned down a mill that has stood for generations.
Carringer’s crying mother spoke to Channel 2’s Amanda Cook after her son’s court appearance.
“I apologize. God, do I apologize for what happened. But I assure you, he’s a wonderful child,” Gina Carringer said.
The judge denied bond to Hand, Carringer and Bond. He said he believed the three are a danger to the community.
“He didn’t do this with malice or anything. Just caught up with the wrong crowd,” Gina Carringer said.
Twenty-year-old Christopher Roberts was also arrested in connection to the fire, but he is only charged with criminal damage to property. He was granted $3,500 bond and ordered to go to substance abuse counseling.