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Karr was married to local teen in '89

LAWRENCEVILLE - Gwinnett has its own link to John Mark Karr, the schoolteacher arrested in Bangkok, Thailand, this week in connection with the death of JonBenet Ramsey a decade ago.

Karr married a Lilburn woman at the Gwinnett County courthouse on May 19, 1989 - seven years before the Dec. 26, 1996, slaying of the 6-year-old beauty queen in Colorado.

The former Lara Marie Knutson was 16 and Karr was 24 when the ceremony was performed by then-acting Probate Judge Margaret Hogsed.

According to the application for the marriage license, Karr's bride lived at 4424 Nanticoke Court in Lilburn.

Amy Allison, who lives at that address now, said she has never met the Knutson family, but she still gets junk mail for them.

She said she was surprised when a reporter showed up at her door to ask about the Karr connection.

"My husband said he thought it was kind of creepy, but you never know what happens anywhere," she said. "It doesn't change my perception of the house."

Allison said another family lived in the house between the Knutsons and her own, and most of her neighbors are fairly new to the neighborhood.

"I don't know anyone who knew the Knutsons," she said. "If you have children, you think, 'What if this had happened in this home?' ... But until all the facts are out, we can't make any kind of judgment."

According to other media outlets, Lara Karr was John Mark Karr's second wife. They have since divorced, and she lives in California.

According to the marriage certification application, Karr was born in Conyers, and he reportedly lived in the Atlanta area around the same time the Ramsey family did before they moved to Colorado, where the killing took place.

Karr has never been certified as a teacher in Georgia, and Rockdale and Gwinnett county officials have no record of him teaching in those school systems.