Thursday, February 25, 2016

Homeowner In Foreclosure Who Vacated Residence, Then Returns Months Later To Retrieve Personal Item Finds Squatter Family Comfortably Making Themselves Feel At Home

In Delaware, Ohio, WCMH-TV Channel 4 reports:
  • The house was decorated for Christmas with a family snug inside. The problem, was the homeowner had no idea they were living there, until he checked on the home he recently vacated to pick up his Christmas tree.

    It is a bizarre case of a family moving into someone else’s home, then being evicted and possibly facing charges after the real homeowner kicks them out.

    The man said he, his girlfriend and four children moved into the east side home on a quiet Delaware city street last October after renting the place.

    “I ran into a guy who wasn’t who he said he was,” said the man. NBC4 is not naming the couple who moved into the home. “He told me he was the original owner of the house and it was in foreclosure and he wanted to make money by renting it to me.”

    The man told NBC4 he paid $550 per month for rent. “We met up with this guy in the parking lot of a tavern, he had me fill out the lease then he signed it.” He said he knew that was weird but needed a place for his family.

    Delaware police initially believed the couple, bringing theft by deception charges against the yet unnamed landlord, but investigators said that story soon fell apart.

    “Potentially if the situation turns out that the folks that were living in the home were in the home not legitimately, then criminal prosecution or charges could be pressed,” said Capt. Adam Moore, with the Delaware police.

    He said this is still an open investigation and little else can be revealed. Police documents show the couple moved into the home on October 1, 2015 and were evicted on December 20.

    The man and his girlfriend said since then they have been forced to move into a homeless shelter to put a roof over their heads.

    Now the home sits idle, sold in a sheriff’s sale with the evicted family’s furniture still locked inside.

    The couple’s case is in the hands of the Delaware County Prosecutor Carol O’Brien, who could present it to a grand jury. The two could face breaking and entering and burglary charges for entering the home and using the electricity.

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