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TENANT WON'T LEAVE - I GOT ARRESTED
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BJKRAMER
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Joined: Thu Feb 8th, 2007
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 Posted: Thu Feb 15th, 2007 11:49 pm
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I WILL, I AM GOING FOR DISMISSAL ON CHARGES.   THANKS, BARB

Yolanda
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Joined: Wed Mar 1st, 2006
Location: Texas USA
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 Posted: Thu Feb 15th, 2007 02:16 pm
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It does not seem that it was your responsibility to disconnect the service on your own.  The company should have done this, then the problem would be between the company and the tenants.  It is very unfortunate that this Sheriff interfered.  You would think he was the one trespassing since it is your property!  His actions seem very strange for a sheriff.  He may have known the tenants.  Good luck to you.  Keep us posted on the outcome!    

BJKRAMER
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 Posted: Thu Feb 15th, 2007 01:23 am
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WHEN WE RENT A PROPERTY, WE HAVE THE TENANTS PUT THE ELECTRICITY IN THEIR NAME.  THESE TENANTS KEPT TELLING US THEY WERE DOING SO, BUT THEY DIDNT. I LIVE IN NW MONTANA, AND IT GETS COLD HERE, SO THE ELECTRIC COMPANY WON'T DISCONNECT DURING COLD WEATHER.  NORMALLY BETWEEN TENANTS, WE HAVE THE ELECTRIC IN OUR NAME, THEN TRANSFER TO TENANT.  THESE TENANTS WERE NOTIFIED TO DO SO, AND REFUSED.  THE ELECTRIC COMPANY TAGGED THEIR HOME GIVING THEM 3 DAYS, THEY STILL REFUSED, IT GOT COLD, THEN AFTER 2.5 WEEKS, WE NOTIFIED THEM AGAIN, THEN CALLED THE ELECTRIC COMPANY, WITH THEM ON PHONE TELLING US HOW TO DISCONNECT AND LOCK UP METER, WE DID SO.  TENANT CALLED SHERIFF, HE CAME, ORDERED US TO RECONNECT, OR HE WOULD ARREST US.  I CALLED THE SHERIFF DEPT, FOUND IT WAS A CIVIL MATTER, AND THEY USUALLY DON'T INTERFERE, JUST DO A STANDBY.  THIS OFFICER TOOK MATTERS INTO HIS OWN HANDS, TOOK A BOLT CUTTER OUT OF HIS CAR AND HAD THE TENANTS TRESPASS OVER ANOTHER ONE OF OUT LOTS WITH HIM, AND CUT OUR PADLOCK.  HE BECAME JUDGE AND JURY, I FEEL.  WHEN WE WENT BACK OVER TO DISCONNECT AGAIN, HE THREATENED MY TENANT ON THE OTHER LOT WITH JAIL, IF SHE DIDN'T TELL HIM WHO DISCONNECTED THE POWER.  HE THEN CAME TO MY HOUSE, HANDCUFFED MY PARTNER AND PUT HIM IN SQUAD CAR.  HE THREATENED US BOTH WITH JAIL IF WE WENT NEAR OUR PROPERTY AGAIN, AND TOLD ME TO SHUT UP AND LISTEN TO HIM.  WE WERE NOT VIOLENT, NOR WERE WE VERBAL OR ANYTHING ELSE.  WE DID WHAT WE WERE TOLD WE HAD A RIGHT TO DO.  THE NEXT NIGHT, AFTER GIVING A 24 HOUR NOTICE THE NIGHT BEFORE, WE SHOWED UP WITH A PROSPECTIVE TENANT, THE SAME OFFICER HANDCUFFED US AND HAULED US TO JAIL, EVEN LOOKING AT OUR COPY OF THE NOTICE,.

LandlordLaura
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 Posted: Tue Feb 13th, 2007 06:00 pm
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Yes, I've owned properties in both California and Kansas.  The utility proceedure for me has always been the same as you describe.  The Tenant is required to deal directly with the utilities to have utilities provided to the property. 

The situation described is a really strange situation... 

Yolanda
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Joined: Wed Mar 1st, 2006
Location: Texas USA
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 Posted: Tue Feb 13th, 2007 04:16 pm
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LandlordLaura, that is why it is so puzzling.  My townhomes take several months to rent in Texas, so I need to have the electricity in my name.  Once the property is leased, I immediately call City Public Service and have it disconnected.  It is up to the new tenant to put the electricity in his or her name.  It is no longer my responsibility and I am not accused of cutting off the electricity.  Once this is done, if the service is still not connected, CPS will put a notice on the door to state that the service will be cut off within a certain amount of time if it is not connected, thus the lock.  In this case I think he did that after the tenants moved in, which still should not be his responsibility.  Perhaps it is a law in his state since he did not do it immediately?!  This still does not make sense to me.  The tenant should be the sole responsible party.  From what I understand, the company providing the electricity, not the landlord put a lock on the meter, and only that company can unlock the meter.  I might be wrong, but it appears that the sheriff was tampering with city property and a civil matter.   If all sheriff's had that capability, we as LL's would be in a fix! 

LandlordLaura
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 Posted: Tue Feb 13th, 2007 03:08 pm
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Like Yolanda, I'm confused.  I looked back over the discusson and wonder what the following mean: "SO I DISCONNECTED PER ELECTRIC COMPANY" and then "SHERIFF CUT MY LOCK AND ALLOWED TENANT TO RESUME".  Does that mean that you are in control of the electricity (or electrical meter) at your property and you somehow locked it to keep if from working?  Does the Tenant have the ability to call the utility company directly and put the service in his/her name(s)?  I'm just wondering...

 

Yolanda
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 Posted: Tue Feb 13th, 2007 01:37 pm
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What the sheriff did to you and the electricity does not make sense to me.  Perhaps this deputy knew the tenants.  These tenants were "homeless" and they know how to play the system.  I cannot imagine an owner being arrested for being on his property unless you were disturbing the peace or "out of control".   What state are you in?  Also, the electricity does not make sense to me, unless it is paid by you according to the lease.  The electricity is usually in my name.  Once I have a lease, I immediately call CPS to have it disconnected.  It would be appalling to me if I had to pay for their electricity because the tenant refused to put it in his or her name.  All this simply does not make sense.  Has anyone else had this experience?  This is a new one on me!  Good luck to you!  Keep us posted.

BJKRAMER
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Joined: Thu Feb 8th, 2007
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 Posted: Fri Feb 9th, 2007 12:30 am
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I REALIZE THAT.  THE PROCESS SERVER IS GOING TO SERVE EVICTION PAPERS TODAY OR TOMORROW.  I AM GOING TO GET AN ATTORNEY TO DISMISS THE CHARGES.  AFTER THEY ARE OUT, I WILL ASSESS THE DAMAGE AND FILE SUIT IN COURT FOR THEM.  I AM GOING TO FILE CHARGES AGAINST THE SHERIFF'S DEPUTY.  HIS SUPERVISOR SAID THAT JAIL WASN'T NECESSARY

vic
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 Posted: Thu Feb 8th, 2007 04:55 pm
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Get a lawyer and stop doing things yourself. You already got into enough trouble. Even if it is not your intention, you may suddenly find yourself on the wrong side of the law and end up being charged with charges that haunt you for the rest of your life while these people go free.

Do not EVER expect gratitude from these people. Get these folks out of the house first with the proper legal process before you try to get even close to that house incl showing it to new tenants.  How well does that house show with 11 tenants in it anyway?

Where any of these notices sent by certified mail?

Vicky

BJKRAMER
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 Posted: Thu Feb 8th, 2007 04:33 pm
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THESE PEOPLE WERE HOMELESS FOR YEARS, WE TOOK THEM INTO OUR OWN HOME, FED THEM, BAILED THEM OUT OF JAIL, ETC.  WE SERVED THEM A 30 DAY NOTICE ON JAN 1, THEY SAY THEY NEVER GOT IT.  WE SERVED A 3 DAY NOTICE TO PAY OR VACATE, THEY SAY THEY NEVER GOT IT.  WE SERVED A 24 HOUR NOTICE TO SHOW TO NEW TENANTS, SHOWED UP FOR THIS SHOWING, THE SHERIFF DEPUTY SHOWED UP TO DO A STANDBY, AND ARRESTED US INSTEAD, SAYING WE WERE TRESPASSING, NEGLIGENT ENDANGERMENT, CRIMINAL MISCHIEF/

 

leopald
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Joined: Tue Nov 28th, 2006
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 Posted: Thu Feb 8th, 2007 01:50 pm
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BJ,

It's a rough business.  You're learning from the school of hardknocks. 

You have a group of professional tenants that knew a green landlord when they saw one.  You need to get an attorney immediately that SPECIALIZES in evictions (tough ones).  These guys have no intent of paying.  They are going to stay as long as the legal system or you allow them to.  Either way, this is going to be expensive and it is going to take some time. 

Now that you know what to do... you need to look over the mistakes so that they aren't repeated.

Did you screen these tenants? Contact Prior Landlords? Run Credit / Criminal Checks?

Did you verify with the utility companies that they turned the electric, gas, and whatever else they are responsible for BEFORE you handed over keys?

Shutting off the electric (you, not the electric company) is often referred to as "self help" eviction and is illegal in almost every state.

Messing with the PD.  The police department absolutely hates dealing with Landlord Tenant issues.  They are usually civil, despite people thinking that it deals with criminal law.  Therefore there is usually little the PD can do.  In your case, once your tenants have keys, they contain the legal term of "possession".  This isn't ownership, but it does give them MANY rights.  Some of those rights trump the rights of ownership.

If you didn't already say something you'll regret to the Sheriff, you might want to pay him a visit and personally apologize for any trouble you've caused.  Explain that you are a new landlord and that you are dealing with PRO tenants and unfortunately are learning as you go.  This won't excuse you, but perhaps he'll understand and any future run-ins may be less... abrahsive.  He may even have some advice on getting rid of these people. 

Last edited on Thu Feb 8th, 2007 01:52 pm by leopald

BJKRAMER
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Joined: Thu Feb 8th, 2007
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 Posted: Thu Feb 8th, 2007 10:59 am
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MY NAME WAS ON ELECTRICITY WAITING FOR TENANT TO CHANGE OVER TO HIS, WOULDN'T DO IT, SO I DISCONNECTED PER ELECTRIC COMPANY.  TENANT CALLED SHERIFF, SHERIFF CUT MY LOCK AND ALLOWED TENANT TO RESUME.  SHERIFF THREATENED ME WITH JAIL IF I CAME BACK TO MY OWN PROPERTY.  SAYS THERE ARE KIDS IN HOUSE.  FIND OUT THERE ARE 11 PEOPLE IN 14 X 70 TRAILER.  TODAY WE FILED EVICTION, WENT TO SHOW HOUSE AFTER 24 HOUR NOTICE, SHERIFF ARRESTED ME FOR TRESPASS, CRIMINAL MISCHIEF, NEGLIGENT ENDANGERMENT.


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