Update: Occupiers Protest Cobb Foreclosures

The courthouse rally started late, then lasted about an hour Tuesday.

Updated 9:30 p.m.

The first Occupiers arrived at the Cobb County Superior Court building around noon Tuesday despite the plan to start the protest at 10 a.m., and they stayed until 1 p.m.

"It went well," Richard Pellegrino said. "There were about 10 of us there, and we made contact with a couple of families that want us to help. I think we got our message across."

Occupiers chanted in front of the courthouse for several minutes, but police moved them to the sidewalk, Pellegrino said.

"The movement has been growing," he said. "As it has moved out to the suburbs, it's drawn participants there. It's a topic that resonates with everyone, whether they agree with Occupy or not."

Occupiers also gathered at foreclosure auctions in DeKalb, Fulton and Gwinnett counties Tuesday.

Protesters plan to continue attending Cobb County's foreclosure auctions, which take place the first Tuesday of every month.

Original Report

The Occupy movement, which began in New York with Occupy Wall Street and reached Atlanta over the summer, has spread to Cobb County.

Today, Occupy Cobb holds its first demonstration, "Occupy the Foreclosure Auctions," from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the in Marietta to protest foreclosure auction.

On the first Tuesday of each month, thousands of foreclosed homes are auctioned off throughout Georgia. According to RealtyTrac, a company that tracks foreclosures, auctions and bank-owned homes, an estimated 1.4 million U.S. homes are in a foreclosure process.

Occupy Cobb, along with Occupy Atlanta, has joined a national call for an immediate moratorium on foreclosures.

The call, Occupy Our Homes, first went out when Monique White of Minneapolis requested an occupation of her home after she learned of its foreclosure. Learn more in a short film telling White's story.

What do you think of the Occupy movement? Is Occupy Our Homes a move in the right direction?

"This monthly action is designed to bring attention to the foreclosure crisis through a noisy disruption of 'business as usual' on the court steps in Fulton, Cobb, Gwinnett and DeKalb counties," Occupy Atlanta said in a statement. "Bring drums, whistles, pots and pans, bells and other noise-makers."

This Occupy Our Homes movement began in more than two dozen cities, including Atlanta, in late November and early December. Occupy protesters have rallied at the county courthouse steps in DeKalb, Gwinnett and Fulton counties.

"We're using our voices, whistles and other noise. The auctioneers don't know what to do, and some of the buyers left,"  Tim Franzen, an Occupy Atlanta spokesman, told CNN.

Occupy Atlanta's focus on foreclosures has resulted in victories.

Beginning Dec. 6, protesters occupied the home of Brigitte Walker, an Iraq War veteran. After a week, the Occupiers helped save it from foreclosure. Lender JPMorgan Chase offered a loan modification that will save Walker hundreds a month, she told The Huffington Post.

A flier from Occupy Atlanta's website about today's event reads: "These are people's homes, taken from them illegally, often immorally. Join with us to stop this tragedy."

Pam J January 05, 2012 at 12:28 AM
"we'll continue to see the foreclosure can kicked down the road. Jeff, don't you think the foreclosures now are a direct result of people losing their jobs? It's got nothing to do with inflated or deflated values. It's as simple as no income, no house. I know four people who have lost their homes because they lost their jobs. I'm about to lose mine. Actually, the mortgage company has had the locks changed on the house, so I guess I've already lost it. I would be willing to bet that at least 3/4's of the homes in foreclosure now are due to job loss.
Audrey Nelson January 27, 2012 at 05:13 AM
Voice of Reason - Can't believe how totally out of touch you are with reality. People are NOT losing their homes because they overspent or did not live within their means. They are losing their homes because they are losing their jobs and their homes have depreciated in value by hundreds of thousands of dollars making it impossible to sell - or their salaries have been cut by 50% - or the company they worked for declared bankruptcy and went out of business and they lost their health insurance and now have medical bills - and people with masters degrees are now making minimum wage at fast food restaurants because no one else will hire them. In Chicago 60,000 teachers applied for less than 2,000 jobs. What about those that have to support their parents or relatives because their medicare is so small and they have gone thru their life savings - or their husband has died - like me - and I still have 3 children at home but only one income - and there is no social security for widows if you make over $14,000. You are either very young and naive or don't know much about what is happening in this country.
Marietta Scott February 17, 2012 at 06:38 PM
I own 2 homes, my own business employing many local citizens and work for a national company. The crime is lazy American citizens who refuse to educate themselves about the Corporate Fraud that has been perpetuated on our country. Citizens are losing their jobs, their homes and their retirements due to Corporations who took advantage of our financial system. They ADVISED Americans that they could afford the loans they offered (not everyone has an MBA and why are we paying them fees if they aren't 'the Experts'), bundled bad loans and sold them as AAA then took out insurance on them knowing they would fail. As a result hard-working Americans who did all the right things in our culture were swindled. Good business, who did nothing wrong, have gone out of business. Lazy are those who still have their jobs, their homes and do nothing to help their fellow citizens. Ignorance is fed by those who get their news from Corporate Media outlets like FoxNews who perpetuate the problem.
Fredda Shutes March 07, 2012 at 01:58 AM
How about an administration which used taxpayers' money to bail out the banks, GM & Chrysler, energy, etc. with no strings attached. The government should have required the banks to put this money back into circulation by making decent loans to the citizenry instead of hiding it overseas or paying big bucks to execs. All of our problems go back to our 14+ trillion dollar debt that we can NEVER pay off. All of us are going to be in the same boat in a third world country before it is over with.
Smyna Res March 07, 2012 at 02:38 AM
I could agree with that....don't think it is the primary cause, but certainly greased the wheels. You could say that about a lot of things though. alcohol in itself isn't bad, but excessive and poor use of alcohol, combined with a car can be disastrous. Wouldn't it be nice if we could take a generally (I think we could all agree here) awful situation and just shrug our shoulders, point our fingers and say "it was them!". The problem was these greedy bankers! I tend to believe the problem rests with the larger population. I don't think its any fun to say we are the problem, so people cast the blame on Wall St., politicians, derivatives, or anything else besides themselves. Just my humble opinion.


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