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Suspect in courthouse shooting had filed complaint



By KATE BRUMBACK
Associated Press

CUMMING, Ga. (AP) -- A man armed with guns, explosives and other supplies shot and wounded a deputy Friday outside a Georgia courthouse and was equipped to take hostages once he got inside, officials said.

The man also hadn't been living at his home for at least 10 days and may have booby-trapped it with explosives, authorities said. Bomb squads were checking both the home and the courthouse.

The suspect, Dennis Marx, was shot and killed at the scene, said Forsyth County Sheriff Duane Piper. Marx had driven up to the courthouse and threw out smoke devices and homemade spike strips to prevent officers from reaching him. Both homemade and commercially made explosives were in his car, suggesting he had planned the assault for days, Piper said.

Suspect Dead After Shootout At Ga. Courthouse

Marx also had water and other supplies, including zip ties that can be used to bind people's hands. Piper said the wounded deputy prevented others from getting hurt when he encountered Marx, though it was not clear if that deputy killed the suspect.

"When the deputy engaged him outside, it saved lives," Piper said. "The entire situation was solved by that deputy's actions."

Few details about Marx were known, though Piper said he had been known to authorities for some time. Marx had filed a civil rights complaint against the sheriff's department in 2013, according to court records.

The complaint accused the sheriff's department of using excessive force and illegal searches. Marx said in the complaint that officers hit him when he was standing with his hands up, used chemical agents to make him believe an explosion or fire had occurred and used an extra set of handcuffs that cut off circulation to his hands.

An attorney representing the sheriff's department in the case was not immediately available.

The deputy, who has been with the department for 25 years, was shot below his knee and is expected to recover. His name was not released.

The courthouse and nearby businesses were evacuated as the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation investigated.

The streets in the neighborhood where Marx lived are steep, narrow and lined with modest homes nestled close together in a wooded area. Neighbor Dorothy Varano said it's a calm and peaceful place to live where neighbors are friendly but don't involve themselves in each other's business.

Varano has lived just up the street from where Marx lived for the last 10 years. She said she had a run-in with him seven or eight years ago when she was walking her Maltese dog, Daisy, past his house and his dog attacked hers. His dog grabbed hers in its jaws and shook the Maltese back and forth. Marx told her his dog wasn't being aggressive and was just playing with her dog like a toy.

Her dog was badly injured and required expensive vet treatment, and she was surprised when he offered to pay her vet bill. He paid it, gave her a small electronic device that emits a sound that's supposed to stop an attacking dog and gave her a box of candy.

Still, she said she decided long ago that she would steer clear of Marx.

"I decided he was not a person I was going to cross in any way because he would probably slash my tires or put something in my gas tank," she said.

Join the discussion

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diempostdiem June 06 2014 at 5:41 PM

I suggest that all liberals who want to eliminate the second amendment turn in their guns immediately and make an announcement to the community to that effect. Why not also publish a list of those who have handed in their guns. That way the criminals who will always get guns will know who to target.

Flag Reply +91 rate up
49 replies
BRUCE June 06 2014 at 5:47 PM

Handled the way it should have been....stopped by a deputy and not some Wyatt Earp "good guy" with a concealed gun and a desire to be a hero.

Flag Reply +73 rate up
43 replies
lioness2go June 06 2014 at 5:33 PM

Oh, gee.....another gun story....more gun violence in a red state.....oh gee, imagine that!

Flag Reply +71 rate up
49 replies
ohogwash June 06 2014 at 5:45 PM

This is where I am glad SWAT and cops are better trained than the nut jobs creating the problems. Dead means no trial, no jail and people can move on and someone doesn't make a hero out of this idiot .. High 5 to the cops who killed him !!!

Flag Reply +63 rate up
6 replies
coldsaber22 June 06 2014 at 6:02 PM

SO ANOTHER DEMOCRAT GOES APESHIT AND DONT BLAME THE SHOOTER BLAME A GUN, DRUNK DRIVER, NEVER B;AME THE CAR, BOMBER NEVER BLAME THE BOMB, BULLY NEVER BLAME THE FIST, BUT A WACKO DEMOCRAT USES A GUN TO KILL, DONT BLAME HIM . BLAME THE GUN

Flag Reply +55 rate up
46 replies
Hello Cindy! June 06 2014 at 6:08 PM

Boy these conservative nutjobs are coming out of the woodwork like roaches everyday..

Flag Reply +47 rate up
20 replies
Richard June 06 2014 at 5:36 PM

Yes Georgia ... allowing weapons in a courthouse ... what could possibly go wrong?

Oh you mean this incident? Oh well, just a guy with a gun, right?

Flag Reply +41 rate up
30 replies
tradermike24 June 06 2014 at 5:33 PM

I am glad that they killed the maniac!!!

Flag Reply +36 rate up
6 replies
rada197 June 06 2014 at 5:37 PM

How do all these mentally disabled maniacs always end up loaded with guns and explosives?!

Flag Reply +36 rate up
25 replies
avir17 June 06 2014 at 5:33 PM

Another sad and deluded person arms himself and goes forth to right some self-perceived wrong.
When will it end?
If everyone is armed i.e." packin' heat", more innocent bystanders will die.
If only "Rule Golden" were possible.

Flag Reply +32 rate up
17 replies
aol~~ 1209600

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