Andrew Wordes, (53) has been battling the City of Roswell for many years, for permission to raise chickens on his property. He has had many run-ins with authorities regarding the city ordinances against raising livestock in the area. Hence he now has the nickname "The Chicken Man".
advises that Wordes spent three months in the Roswell Detention Center last year over the problems with his chickens. Friends and neighbours say that the the ongoing legal troubles "took a toll on Wordes".
“Andrew gave as good as he received, but there were a lot of citations and traffic stops on him,” said a neighbor Cindy McEntire in a phone interview.
And now, in a far worse turn of events, his home was foreclosed on and he chose to fight the eviction the only way he knew how. He poured petrol over the home and burned it, while still inside the house.
In an interview with the AJC
last month, Wordes blamed the city for his financial problems that have ended up with his home in foreclosure. He said that the fines and jail time served had caused him to fall behind on his mortgage payments.
"I'm still trying to get this resolved, but it doesn't look like it's going to be happy," Wordes added in the same interview.
A friend of Wordes, Patti Silva said that he had planned this, and had become desperate after learning about three weeks ago that the land was going to be seized.
Silva had known him for several years and had given him assistance with his legal problems. In an effort to prevent something horrible from occurring, she had shared her concerns with the local police.
On Monday, Wordes called a reporter with the local news and asked him to come to the house. When Mike Petchenik, the reporter, pulled up in the WSBTV truck, he saw Fulton County Marshalls trying to speak to Wordes through the front door. They were trying to evict him from the home.
Wordes denied them entry to his home and refused to come out.
In a two hour stand-off, Wordes spoke to Petchenik on the phone, and told him to get the Marshals off his property. His last words to Petchenik were: "I appreciate everything, brother. I appreciate everything you've done. I can't tell you what's going to happen, it ain't pretty, though,"
Antonio Johnson, one of the Marshals on the scene said: “Once he advised us to leave his property, we retreated. And that’s when the explosion happened.”
The explosion shook both the house and the neighborhood and the remains of a charred body were found, which has now been confirmed to be that of Wordes
Investigators found an additional device in the home which might possibly be a bomb.
Another neighbor, John Cherok spoke of seeing his neighbor on Monday morning. He had helped him to clear the lawn of tree limbs and had piled them on the curb.
While discussing with Wordes whether the local trash removal service would collect the debris, Wordes apparently told Cherok that "Today's going to be the day, anyway. " He added: “Obviously, he planned to end it this way."