ACWORTH, Ga. (CBS46) -- There is nothing tranquil about what happened at tranquil gardens in Acworth Friday morning. The assisted living facility is now 100-percent closed.

Judy Edenfield scrambled to find another place for her brother-in-law to live after he was forced out.

“I’m upset and I’m sad for what it’s doing not only to my family, but to all these other families here,” Edenfield said. “We have paperwork that says it has to have a 30-days-notice. No notice was given to us except for three days.”

Steve Hairston blames the owners for failing to properly care for the seniors.

“It’s criminal what they did,” Hairston said. “I’m very angry. I’m just furious. I think this is the lowest of the low to do this to the 95, 97-year-olds, 99-year-olds. It’s just beyond pale.”

Co-owner Brian Stewart claims financial troubles led to the closure. He even showed up to have the locks changed before all of the seniors were out according to staff members.

“He doesn’t know this business, if he knew this business, he would know that a resident can’t be left unattended. He doesn’t care, he got their check, he got their $4,800 this month,” Tranquil Gardens Executive Director Tiffany Echols said.

Staff members protested by setting their work clothes on fire outside the business.

“We just felt like we were burned, and we thought that burning their shirts, the name, was appropriate,” Former Tranquil Gardens Executive Director Nikki Windsor said.

The only communication we’ve received from owners Janice and Brian Stewart is via a statement. They said they couldn’t recover from a year-long shutdown from the pandemic.

The Cherokee County Sheriff's Office is now looking into the matter to determine if the owner’s actions were criminal.

Copyright 2021 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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