THOMASVILLE — Elsie Lowery tried to stay with her husband, but her efforts did not pan out. She moved out.

About noon Friday, Lowery, who said she is afraid of her spouse, again left the couple’s North Crawford Street residence.

“He was all right for a while, and then he had a couple of beers,” Lowery explained about her husband’s Friday actions.

Johnny Lowery asked his wife to come to their home Thursday — in the 600 block of North Crawford — and help him clean.

The landlord’s later arrival at the residence so angered Lowery that he poured gasoline on the landlord’s truck, the front porch and inside the house.

Mrs. Lowery said she went to New Mexico for four months, and her spouse got behind in the rent.

She said there were no firearms in the house, only knives, a saw and a lighter. Four puppies also were in the house, Mrs. Lowery pointed out.

Lt. Steve Belvin, commander of the Thomasville Police Department Criminal Investigations Division, said Lowery, who has a history of mental illness, was being evicted.

He threatened police with a chainsaw and said he would set the house on fire.

Lowery, 57, stood on the front porch of the house during the midday stand-off and threw beer bottles at police. He also was drinking beer and gesturing wildly with an amber bottle of the beverage in his hand.

Wearing scuba goggles, he waved a club and a Tiki torch in a threatening manner at officers.

“He threw a stereo in the street,” Belvin said.

As police detective Louis Schofill and Thomas County Sheriff’s Office investigator Bob Brettel approached Lowery from the front yard and threw bottles of water to him, SWAT officers lined up out of Lowery’s view along the south side of the house.

As officers in the front yard distracted Lowery, SWAT members, firing non-lethal bean-bag rounds from a shotgun, rushed the porch and took Lowery down about 1:30 p.m.

Prior to the takedown, Mrs. Lowery watched the activity from half a block away at the intersection of North Crawford and East Calhoun Street.

Now living on Bennett Street, Mrs. Lowery said she considered living with her husband “too dangerous.”

“He was getting sick, I guess,” said she about her spouse of 34 years. The couple has two grown children who live in Albany and Las Vegas, Nev.

Lowery has not been taking prescribed medication for his mental problems, Mrs. Lowery said, adding that she feared he might harm himself during the siege.

Lowery was being evaluated at the Archbold Memorial Hospital emergency room late Friday afternoon and would be transported from there to Southwestern State Hospital, said Belvin, SWAT commander.

Lowery is charged with aggravated assault and kidnapping.

The puppies that were in the residence are being housed at the Thomasville-Thomas County Humane Society animal shelter.

“ ... He just got mad with the landlord,” Mrs. Lowery explained.

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