The woman whom Atlanta authorities believe deliberately burned down the Wendy’s restaurant during the city’s peaceful protests has been arrested, the Fulton County Sheriff’s Department revealed.
According to a statement disseminated via Twitter, the Atlanta-based law enforcement agency confirmed media reports that a Caucasian woman, Natalie White, was booked into the Fulton County Jail. White has been charged with arson, a felony in Georgia.
Wendy’s was burned to the ground on Saturday, June 13, 2020, a day after Rayshard Lewis was shot twice in the back and died in the restaurant’s parking lot. An intoxicated Lewis had resisted arrest after failing a field sobriety test. Lewis had fallen asleep in the drive-thru lane, clogging traffic, and failed to stay awake after Wendy’s employees tried to wake him, prompting them to notify authorities.
The Fulton County Sheriff's Office Fugitive Unit just apprehended Wendys arson suspect Natalie White moments ago. White is being booked into the Fulton County Jail right now. This case is being investigated by @ATLFireRescue Arson Unit. @FGTV @FultonInfo
— Fulton Sheriff PIO (@FultonSheriff) June 23, 2020
White’s mugshot has not been made available as of press time. Through her attorney, White denies she is responsible for the fire, WSB-TV reports.
Her Atty, @DrewFindling says he surrendered Natalie White for alleged #arson of #Wendy’s near which #RayshardBrooks was killed. Findling says she is not responsible for the fire. Says he’s been talking to DA’s office about surrender since weekend, expects signature bond @wsbtv
— Mark Winne (@MarkWinneWSB) June 23, 2020
On Saturday, June 13, 2020, the Atlanta Police Department posted photos and videos of a suspicious-looking White woman who was dressed in black, from head to toe, that camouflaged her appearance. A can that she was allegedly carrying in her hand is suspected to have been used to set fire to the restaurant on University Avenue, just south of downtown. The photos and videos were supplied by some of the protesters who watched a female suspect as she set Wendy’s ablaze.
Chief Fire Investigator James Oliver said the fire at the restaurant was started in multiple locations using things such as homemade blow torches and fireworks. Authorities added that there is at least one other suspect on the loose. They are offering a $10,000 reward for his or her capture.
Tipsters can call Crime Stoppers at 404-577-8477 with any information.