Investigators working two separate arson cases in Wheeler County

55-year-old William Gillis, of Glenwood, is charged with two counts of arson in the first degree.

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ALAMO, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Investigators in Wheeler County are working two separate arson investigations.

First, 55-year-old William Gillis, of Glenwood, is charged with two counts of arson in the first degree. He is accused of setting two fires on separate occasions in a mobile home salvage yard. The fires happened on January 26th and February 1st. The fires spread to other empty mobile homes outside.

Gillis worked at the yard as a night watchmen. He’s in the Wheeler County Jail until he posts his $50,000 bond.

Wheeler County investigators are also searching for 41-year-old Damien Ferguson of Alamo. He’s wanted for first degree arson.

Ferguson is accused of setting fire to the master bathroom closet in a home where he lived.

Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner John F. King says the fire happened around 10:00 Wednesday night and caused moderate damage in the master suite area.

Ferguson then left the scene. If anyone has any information on his whereabouts, contact our Fire Investigations Unit at 1‐800‐282‐5804.

First Degree Arson is a felony punishable by a fine of no more than $50,000 or by a prison term between one and twenty years, or both.


William Gillis


Damien Ferguson




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Shelby Coates anchors 41NBC News at 5, 5:30, 6 and 11. She returns to 41NBC after working in Evansville, Indiana as the Morning/Noon Anchor and Executive Producer for WEVV. Shelby also spent time in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where she spent three years anchoring and producing the weekend morning newscasts at WSPA-TV. She also worked as a general assignment reporter, receiving several honors for her investigative and consumer reporting. Shelby has spent time working as a news anchor/reporter in Chattanooga, Tennessee; Macon, Georgia; and Abilene, Texas. Shelby is a native of Clarksville, Tennessee. She graduated from Abilene Christian University in Texas with a bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Journalism and Mass Communication and a minor in sociology. Shelby has a passion for empowering local communities, church ministry, public speaking, strengthening women and mentoring young people.