• Relative's murder prompts family to close longtime business

    By: Erica Byfield


    DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. - The family of the woman who was shot and killed in a lounge in northwest Atlanta says they will not reopen O.T.'s Lounge Soul Food.

    The owner, Vanessa "Elaine" Thrasher, was murdered on Aug. 16.

    On Monday, for the first time, Channel 2 Action News went inside the lounge.

    The restaurant had been in Thrasher's family for 41 years. Before she ran it, her father, O.T., did.

    Thrasher's brother did not want to be interviewed but showed Channel Two's Erica Byfield a bullet hole in the refrigerator.

    In the days following the 53-year-old's death, a man who says he witnessed the crime told Channel 2 Action News the robbers stole from everyone inside the lounge before killing Thrasher.

    Atlanta police have released surveillance photos of three suspects.

    On Aug. 18, Atlanta detectives and U.S. Marshals kicked in a metro motel room door, arrested 23-year-old Otis Ricks and charged him with murder.

    Investigators say they have an arrest warrant for another man and are still working to identify the third man in the photos, seen in a shirt that says "CRG" on the front.

    Sources tell Channel Two "CRG" stands for Campbellton Road Gangsters.

    Thrasher's funeral is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 25 at 11 a.m. at Jackson Memorial Baptist Church in Atlanta.

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    Relative's murder prompts family to close longtime business