Jody John Wilson, 44, of 7020 Surrey Drive, Woodstock, is charged with making false statements and terroristic threats, among other charges. He is the owner of the Starlight Café on Roswell Street, directly across from the Cobb County Courthouse on the Square.
Wilson's home in Woodstock has been in and out of foreclosure since 2010, according to a search of records by the Marietta Daily Journal. In the latest development, his home was scheduled to be auctioned to the highest bidder on Tuesday in Canton. Why he threatened both the Cherokee and Cobb courthouses remains unclear and authorities did not speak to that issue at a 4 p.m. press conference in Marietta.
Dozens of law enforcement officers, mostly from the Cobb County Sheriff’s Office, descended on the Starlight Café around 12:30 p.m. today. They came in vehicles both marked and unmarked. And customers said they left with the owner, Jody Wilson, in custody. Then they towed Wilson's car away.
One sheriff’s deputy confirmed that they had obtained a warrant to search a silver Nissan Sentra and that the case was subject to an “open investigation,” which he could not comment on. The car was towed from the lot behind the café.
The parking lot attendant confirmed that the silver Nissan belonged to Wilson, the owner of the café.
“We had another bomb threat two or three months ago,” said the attendant, who asked not to be identified.
The attendant said he could hardly believe that Wilson would be the subject of any investigation into a bomb threat.
“He’s a very nice guy. Talkative. To me he seemed like a straight arrow,” he said. “He’s highly educated. An engineer, but he told me he’d rather run a restaurant than do engineering stuff.”
The parking lot attendant said Wilson would bring him lunch every day in return for letting him park his car in the lot free of charge.
A woman identified as Wilson’s wife, Lidya Wilson, said her husband was not arrested “only questioned” by authorities. That turned out not to be the case.
Meanwhile, across Roswell Street, deputies evacuated the courthouse and adjoining Justice Center for about 40 minutes to an hour on what is known as “foreclosure Tuesday.” This is the day that foreclosed properties go up for auction at the courthouse steps.
It was also on a foreclosure day at the courthouse on Jan. 2 that Jody Wilson is accused of calling in bomb threats.
Customers said they could not believe that Wilson could be guilty of calling in a bomb threat.
At the same time the Cobb courthouse was being evacuated because of a bomb threat, the Cherokee County Courthouse was also under a bomb threat and being evacuated.
“He’s just a nice guy, a real nice guy,” said Dena Hudson, who works at the Rothbloom Law Firm on Waddell Street behind Wilson’s café.