Husband Bulldozes House While Wife's Away: 'Everything Was In There. I'm in Shock'

Amy Schaeffer

A woman in New York state says she came home to find her husband had torn down their suburban home by means of an excavating company while she was away. She says she has no idea what caused him to do this; when she came home, everything she owned was gone.

Homeowner Diane Andryshak of Middletown, New York, 60 miles northwest of New York City, said she came home to an empty lot where she had lived with her husband of nine years, and her name was on the mortgage. She says she has no idea what caused him to do this; when she came home, all she saw was an empty lot. She was crying as she spoke to ABC station WABC.

"None of my belongings were taken out. Everything was in the house. I'm in shock, still I'm in shock."
"I don't know what happened. I don't know anything. I know that when I got here he was already down at the police station. We were not fighting, we were not arguing."

Built in 1956, the home was small, just 840-square feet, with three bedrooms and one bathroom, according to Property records show it last sold in Nov. 2005, to Andryshak, for $160,000.

According to investigators, James Rhein said the house was beyond repair and he became frustrated with the renovation, so he decided to bulldoze it down while his wife was away.

Steve Belfiglio, a neighbor, told WABC that Rhein said he was going to tear it down, but he thought he was joking.

"I asked him just kidding around if he was going to knock down the house with a bulldozer, and he said, 'Yeah.' I thought he was kidding. So I went to work and when I came back this is what we found."

Andryshak has lost everything, and doesn't know any answers to the strange actions of her husband.

"I have family and friends, right now I'm staying with a friend. I don't have any answers for you, I don't have any answers for you whatsoever."

[Photo courtesy of WABC]