Monday, December 19, 2016

After Allegedly Defaulting On Contract For Deed, Upstate NY Man Gets Pinched On Felony Charges On Accusation Of Using Forged Deed To Swipe House From Out-Of-State Owner/Seller

In Syracuse, New York, The Post-Standard reports:
  • The minister of a Syracuse church was brought into court in handcuffs [] on felony charges relating to his alleged scheme to steal a city house.

    The Rev. L. Micah Dexter, 46, was charged with criminal possession of a forged instrument and offering that instrument for filing. Bail was set at $20,000 cash or bond by County Court Judge Stephen Dougherty.

    Dexter is accused of faking a deed that appeared to show that another man, James Greene, of South Carolina, had given him ownership of a South Side residence where Dexter had been behind on rent.

    During an eviction proceeding, Dexter is accused of referencing the faked document before a City Court judge. Dexter was later evicted.

    Greene filed a separate lawsuit in September accusing Dexter of illegally taking ownership of the house. The lawsuit says Dexter stole the entire signature page from another document -- signed by Greene -- and affixed the copy to the fake deed.

    Greene had entered a "contract for deed" (rent to own) agreement with Dexter, but never transferred the deed after Dexter failed to make payments, the lawsuit says. Dexter is accused of copying Greene's signature from the "contract for deed."

    In 2013, county records reflect Dexter took ownership of the house based on the allegedly forged deed. The house is valued at approximately $50,000.

    Greene promised to seek criminal charges against Dexter. That led to [the current] court proceeding.

    Dexter is minister of the Greater New Salem Missionary Baptist Church on South Avenue.

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