A Georgia man known for raising chickens appears to have blown up his home Monday afternoon after police arrived to evict him. It's the latest development in an ongoing battle over the use of the Roswell property.
Known as the "Chicken Man," Andrew Wordes raised poultry at his suburban Atlanta home even though city attorneys argued that violated ordinances banning livestock in residential areas, according to the Georgia Zoning Blog.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Wordes, 53, fell behind on his mortgage payments while serving jail time for failing to comply with an order restricting the number of animals he kept.
Today, Fulton County Marshalls came to evict him. But a standoff ensued and around 12:45 p.m., Wordes called the cellphone of local TV reporter Mike Petchenik, who was outside the home, and told him to warn marshals to leave the property, according to the AJC. He allegedly told Petchenik, "I can't tell you" what's going to happen, "but it ain't going to be pretty."
Moments later, the home exploded, starting a fire. CBS Atlanta reported that fire officials found a deceased individual inside, but could not immediately confirm that the victim was Wordes.
Investigators found gasoline and a potential detonation device inside, according to the AJC. But officially the cause of the explosion remains under investigation, the Associated Press said.
Wordes organized the North Georgia Pet Chicken Meetup Group on the social networking site Meetup. In his profile, Wordes admits to owning more chickens than the city allowed, and implied that he sold the eggs to eager neighbors. "I love my birds with all of my heart and will always do whatever I can to protect and care for them," he wrote.
He also spoke ardently of his chickens on the page, saying, "What's not to like about owning chickens. They have great personalities, are easy to care for, they don't pee on the carpet & it's a blast to watch them with 1/2 a watermelon (chicken cocaine). Who needs Comedy Central, when you have chicken TV?"