Cobb County

Mother of 4 found dead in Cobb County home during welfare check, police say

COBB COUNTY, Ga. — A family is grieving the loss of a mother of four, who officials say was found dead in her home.

Cobb County police told Channel 2 Action News that officers were called to do a welfare check at a home on Perch Drive in Marietta last Wednesday.

When officers arrived, they located Melinda Jolly, who was found dead inside the home by her cousin.

Family told Channel 2 Action News that before her cousin found her, neighbors had been knocking on Melinda Jolly’s door and did not receive a response.

According to a fundraiser set up by her family, Melinda Jolly was the mother of four children and moved to Georgia from California in 2019 after her husband died from cancer.

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Kathleen Jolly, Melinda’s sister, said the family had found out that her sister was in an abusive relationship around the time of her death.

“My mom and I live in California, so we have been calling the police department where she lives so that they could send police officers to her house to do welfare checks. The last time they checked on her was Jan. 15,” Kathleen Jolly wrote. “My cousin Jill went to Melinda’s home on Wednesday to check on her, and that is when she was found; Melinda was no longer with us.”

Authorities confirmed that a suspect was arrested on Jan. 18 in Okaloosa County, Florida. Charles Cook, 41, faces murder and aggravated assault charges in Melinda Jolly’s death.

Police have not specified the nature of Melinda and the suspect’s relationship.


“Melinda was a kind, compassionate young woman with her whole life ahead of her,” Kathleen Jolly wrote. “She had a sparkle in her eye and truly lit up a room. She had a big heart and loved her children with everything she had. She was the best mom, a beloved daughter, a caring sister, a whimsical aunt, a gracious niece, and a forever friend. She was just a beautiful person inside and out. She had the best smile and the craziest ideas. She will be missed by so many.”

Family members confirmed that the children are now in the care of their aunt and uncle.

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“Please pray for the children because they are left without a mother and a father,” Kathleen Jolly wrote. “It will be a long road of healing and rebuilding for everyone. Please pray for our entire family; we are all devastated beyond belief.”

Channel 2′s Audrey Washington was in the neighborhood Monday, where people who lived nearby said they are still in shock.

“I was shaken, not knowing how to react,” Robert Williams said. “It was something not expected.”

Some neighbors said they knew something must be wrong because the family seemed to just disappear.

“Their dogs were outside, and it was so cold,” neighbor Danielle Burdett said.

Burdett said she knew Jolly had a troubled relationship with her live-in boyfriend, Cook.

“I actually gave them the tag number to his vehicle and that’s what I believe helped get him,” Burdett said.

Burdett said she encourages anyone who is in an abusive relationship to reach out for help.


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