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Police: Buford man battered grandma over cigarettes

Roger Thomas Dean

Roger Thomas Dean

BUFORD -- An 86-year-old Buford retiree told police her grandson held her hostage in her own home and beat her up during a dispute over cigarettes.

The victim, Lois Brownlee, came forward to police last week alleging the grandson she'd raised -- repeat convict Roger Thomas Dean, 37 -- had moved into her Gravel Springs Road home uninvited and became violent with her.

The situation came to a head June 7, Brownlee told police, after she'd visited her daughter for the day and returned to find Dean drunk and angered by her absence.

"Dean was yelling about not having any cigarettes, which Ms. Brownlee usually furnishes," an officer wrote in a Gwinnett police report.

Dean twisted his grandmother's hand behind her back, which caused "extreme pain" and bruising, Brownlee told police. Dean later told police he didn't cause the injuries, and that Brownlee "falls a lot," the report states.

Brownlee told police Dean had warned her to neither leave the home nor call police, or else he'd "fix you the way you have never been fixed before." He later ripped her phone out of the wall, the report states.

Brownlee slipped out of the home as Dean and his girlfriend slept and drove to her sister's home. She told police "she was afraid to go home until Mr. Dean was gone," the officer wrote.

Police served a warrant on Brownlee's home and arrested Dean on charges of battery, interference with a call for emergency assistance and false imprisonment, a felony.

Dean's criminal exploits have landed him in the news before -- and in prison four times, according to Georgia Department of Corrections records.

Previous convictions in Gwinnett include numerous incidents of burglary and theft, and a 2006 conviction for escape.

In February that year, Dean was serving time in Gwinnett for a probation violation when he was loaned to Lilburn police for a work detail and stole a truck. He later dumped the truck in Snellville, boosted another car and was arrested using a payphone in Flowery Branch, officials said.

Dean was paroled from prison in April 2009. He remains at the Gwinnett County Jail without bond.