A family's remaining belongings cover the front lawn, a moving pod sits, unattended in the driveway, the house that stands over them is empty and the Occupy Atlanta protestors who camped out there in solidarity have left. This is the sad end to a family's fight to stay in their home after losing it to foreclosure.
The Rorey's house was sold at an auction last month. Protestors later moved in, with the family's approval, in an effort to persuade Fannie Mae, the company that currently holds the loan to reverse the process and convince Gwinnett County Sheriff Butch Conway to delay evicting the family.
The group vowed to stay and get arrested if Gwinnett County deputies arrived. On Thursday, however, the group relented, uprooted its tents that had been sitting on the home's front lawn and move out of the house after Conway gave them an ultimatum, said organizer Tim Franzen.
"Sheriff Butch Conway contacted the Rorey family and threatened to arrest them if Occupy Atlanta is still occupying the space," Franzen said.
Conway would not speak with CBS Atlanta. He instead sent a written statement that read "I am not going to address the accusations made by Occupy Atlanta. Evictions are never pleasant for anyone, but I have a job to do, and I'm doing my job."
The Roreys moved. Franzen contended that the fight is not over. "This is a winnable fight," Franzen said.
But this is not the result the family had hoped for.
CBS Atlanta asked Franzen if the group's tactics had backfired. "Absolutely not," Franzen responded.
"Have we damaged their campaign to save their home? Absolutely not. They had an eviction order on Monday and they (had not) gotten evicted."
Asam Alim, the attorney for the Roreys, said the family's problems began when Everhome, the company that took over the family's mortgage, baited them into a foreclosure. Alim said the Roreys last year tried to refinance their mortgage, but Everhome suggested that they had to fall behind in payments in order for the company to negotiate. Alim said the Roreys had not missed any payments.
A spokeswoman for Everhome would speak about the Roreys' case. "We cannot confirm specific details regarding the case. It is Everhome's policy to not comment on individual cases and we are committed to honoring the privacy of our homeowners. Everbank analyzes the circumstances of each homeowner for appropriate alternatives to foreclosure," Said spokeswoman Reshma Fernandes.
Occupy Atlanta protestors said they would continue to meet but not camp out at the Rorey's former home.
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