DA: Union County man shot 4 children then set house on fire

Officials with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation announced they were working with the Union County Sheriff’s Office to determine the cause of a deadly house fire in Luttrell.
Officials with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation announced they were working with the Union County Sheriff’s Office.
Published: Jan. 30, 2023 at 12:26 AM EST|Updated: May. 23, 2023 at 2:25 PM EDT
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LUTTRELL, Tenn. (WVLT) - Officials with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation told WVLT News they were investigating a deadly house fire in Union County.

On January 29, 2023 just after 2:30 P.M. the Luttrell Volunteer Fire Department and the Union County Sheriff’s Office were called to a house fire at 380 Clinch Valley Road in Luttrell according to TBI Spokesperson Keli McAlister.

Union County District Attorney General Jared Effler filed a memorandum with the findings of the fatal fire investigation on Monday, May 22. Effler said in the filing that when firefighters arrived on January 29 they found five deceased people, several of which appeared to have gunshot wounds.

Effler said that the TBI investigation found that all four children had been shot by Charles Damon Aljumaily with the handgun being found directly under the body of Aljumaily. TBI said in the report that the wife of Aljumaily said that they had been having marital problems for a while and that Aljumaily had been diagnosed with borderline bipolar disorder, and had told her there was a devil in his head attacking him.

TBI said in the reports that Dr. Maxwell Rollins, a Pathologist with the Regional Forensic Center, found that all four juveniles had been shot multiple times and were considered homicides and that Aljumaily died from a single gunshot wound to the head.

Effler said in the finds of the report that all four juvenile victims had been shot by Aljumaily then set then he set fire to the home near the dining room and then shot himself. The finding in the reports said that all 4 victims and Aljumaily all died from bullets that were fired from the handgun that was found under Aljumaily.

Union County Director of Schools Gregory Clay issued a statement regarding the deaths.

“Our hearts are heavy, but it is in times such as these that our small, Union County community comes together to support one another,” Clay said.

TBI says that 4 juveniles and 1 adult were killed in a Union County house fire

Dennis Longhurst, the grandfather of the children who died in the fire, told WVLT News he was trying to support his daughter, who was running errands when the fire broke out in the house.

“I am very concerned about my daughter and that she’s lost her, quite a bit of her family and that I am really here trying to help her out and see what I can do to help her,” Longhurst said.

Longhurst was able to confirm the identities of the four juveniles killed in the fire: Briseis Aljumaily, 15, Audrie Cooper-Fortner, 9, Gabriella Aljumaily, 5 and Evie Cooper-Fortner, 5.