Showing posts with label Homelessness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Homelessness. Show all posts

Friday, December 22, 2023

 Report Reveals Kansas Agency Investigated Family of Girl 5 Times Before Her Tragic Death

Child welfare authorities investigated the family of a 5-year-old Kansas girl, Zoey Felix, five times in the 13 months preceding her tragic rape and murder, as detailed in a report released on Tuesday. Despite allegations of neglect and drug use by her mother, authorities were unable to confirm these claims, and the family consistently declined to offer assistance.

5-year-old Kansas girl Raped and Killed at Homeless Campsite

The State Department of Children and Families report revealed that, in one instance, the agency verified the mother's failure to properly supervise Zoey but placed the girl with her father, deeming no safety concerns. Subsequent allegations in late August regarding drug use and lack of utilities in the home resulted in seven unsuccessful attempts by child welfare officials to contact the family over the next month.

Tragically, Zoey died on Oct. 2 at a gas station where fire crews were unable to resuscitate her. Neighbors believe Zoey and her father had been camping in a grove of trees on a nearby vacant lot. Mickel Cherry, a 25-year-old homeless man, faces charges of first-degree murder, rape, and capital murder in connection with Zoey's death. The circumstances of Zoey's demise have not been disclosed by authorities.

Governor Laura Kelly expressed her dismay at Zoey Felix's "unacceptable tragedy" and announced plans to advocate for legislation expediting information release in cases of child abuse or neglect-related deaths. The current practice involves delayed summaries from the Department of Children and Families, with full case reports released after the completion of prosecution, often taking over a year.

An information vacuum in Zoey's case persisted as a judge sealed the arrest affidavit supporting criminal charges against Cherry, citing concerns about jeopardizing witness safety and potential evidence destruction.

Neighbors had previously reported concerns about Zoey's well-being, describing her as wandering the neighborhood in a distressed state. The summary from the Department of Children and Families indicated that the first tip about Zoey was received on Sept. 8, 2022, alleging poor home conditions and possible drug use in the presence of a child. Although the mother tested negative for drugs, the agency offered help, which the family declined.

The summary further detailed incidents, including an unsupervised child complaint in November 2002, an arrest of Zoey's mother for driving under the influence with Zoey in the car, and subsequent investigations that led to offers of help being declined by the family. Despite repeated attempts to contact the family in September after a complaint about drug use and lack of utilities, authorities were unsuccessful. Concurrently, police visits to the home did not locate Zoey, as her father claimed she wasn't living there.

Following Zoey's tragic death, the Department for Children and Families has pledged to launch a thorough investigation, opening another inquiry in response to the circumstances surrounding Zoey's demise.

Report Reveals Kansas Agency Investigated Family of Girl 5 Times Before Her Tragic Death

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Saturday, December 16, 2023

 Texas Resident in $16 Home Forced to Leave After 8 Months

Kenneth Robinson, known for residing in a $340,000 home in Flower Mound, Texas, for eight months after submitting a $16 filing fee under the law of "adverse possession," has been ordered to vacate the property. Robinson claimed the right to occupy the home after the owner abandoned it due to foreclosure, and the mortgage company reportedly went out of business. A judge in Denton County ruled in favor of the current lienholder, Bank of America, allowing them to remove Robinson from the property.

Man Buys $300,000 House for $16, Neighbors Are Furious

Despite gaining local fame and creating a website and eBook about his unconventional living situation, Robinson complied with the court's decision and moved out. Adverse possession, a common law concept developed in the 1800s, allows individuals to claim clear title to a property after publicly occupying it for a specific period, usually ten years. The growing number of abandoned homes resulting from the foreclosure crisis has led to increased interest in adverse possession.

While some websites provide instructions on how to pursue adverse possession, critics argue that taking another's property without payment is an un-American notion. The National Association of Realtors stated that adverse possession is not common and not on their radar. Despite the legal aspects, ethical concerns arise, with some asserting that what may be legally permissible is not necessarily ethically right. Robinson's former neighbors criticized his actions, suggesting that if he wanted the house, he should have purchased it like everyone else. Critics emphasize the importance of respecting property rights, even in challenging circumstances.

Texas Resident in $16 Home Forced to Leave After 8 Months

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Thursday, December 14, 2023

Florida Homeowner Discovers $38K in Damages as Squatters Vandalize Property Upon Eviction 

Upon checking her home in Jacksonville before putting it up for sale, Pattie Peeples encountered an unexpected and troubling situation. Discovering two individuals inside her residence, claiming to be tenants, Peeples was informed that they had allegedly signed a lease and had a right to be there. The situation escalated when Peeples found a dog and ten puppies on the porch.

Squatter Cause $38,000 in Damages & Kick Homeowner Out of Her Own House

Despite involving the police, Peeples was informed that it was a civil matter, and law enforcement could not intervene. Determined to address the issue, Peeples initiated a formal eviction process through the courts. After weeks of legal proceedings, the court ordered the sheriff to remove the alleged squatters.

In the 24-hour notice period before their eviction, the individuals vanished, leaving Peeples to reclaim her property. However, the home had suffered extensive damage amounting to $38,000, including holes in the walls and cabinets torn out.

Peeples suspects that the alleged squatters intentionally vandalized the property as an act of revenge before departing. Highlighting the vulnerability of leaving a house vacant in the current real estate market, Peeples emphasizes the risk of attracting squatters, regardless of the location in the United States.

Florida Homeowner Discovers $38K in Damages as Squatters Vandalize Property Upon Eviction

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Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Homelessness: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

Homelessness: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

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