By Chloe Morrison
Sam Parker, estranged husband of missing Walker County 911 dispatcher Theresa Parker, confirmed he has hired an attorney.
He let the Chattanooga Times Free Press know when he cited the strict advice of his lawyer in canceling an interview he had scheduled with the newspaper for noon Friday.
Mr. Parker spoke out this week for the first time since his wife disappeared March 21, giving an interview to Atlanta TV's Fox 5 News, and he scheduled an interview with the Times Free Press.
Carolyn Wooten, Mr. Parker's sister and a frequent spokesperson for him, said they were not revealing who Mr. Parker's attorney is, but she said he is not local.
Mr. Parker spoke briefly, when setting up the interview, about the hardships he has faced -- his wife disappeared, he was named a "person of interest" in the case by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and he was fired from his job as a LaFayette Police Department sergeant.
"I have opened everything I have had in my life for total investigation," he said, noting his house has been searched five times and authorities took his credit cards, social security card and truck title.
"They came in this house and made it to where I'm going to implode," he said.
FBI investigators conducted a sixth search on Friday, calling it "routine."
Mrs. Parker disappeared on March 21. In the two months since her disappearance, searches, vigils and benefits have been staged. A reward fund is established for anyone with information leading to Mrs. Parker's recovery.
At first, search efforts were highly publicized, but when Rome Judicial Circuit District Attorney Leigh Patterson took over the case, she told authorities not to talk to the media.
Mr. Parker said he has been "Wacoed" and "Ruby Ridged" by authorities, cut off from the outside world. He said even his close friends won't talk with him for fear of being fired.
"Can you imagine what it is like to go three days and not talk to anybody?" Mr. Parker said.
His siblings are the only people who have been there for him, he said.
On April 14, Mr. Parker tried to harm himself. He said that was his lowest point.
"I did bottom out," he said. "I wanted to die rather than live like they had designed for me."
Mrs. Parker's family said they know something tragic has happened to their missing loved one, but Mr. Parker told Fox 5 he thinks she went to Florida. Mrs. Parker's sister, Hilda Wilson, said if her sister were alive, she would know.
"If he thinks she is alive, why doesn't he tell us?" Mrs. Wilson asked, adding, "I personally don't think he is telling the truth about anything."
She said his statements were cruel to her mother.
"My mother, bless her heart, she (heard his claims) and jumped up and her heart started pounding," Mrs. Wilson said. "She had a glimmer of hope for a minute or two (that Mrs. Parker was alive)."
E-mail Chloe Morrison at firstname.lastname@example.org