Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Judge orders Safety Harbor squatters to move out

Elizabeth Sewall, right, and her grown daughter, Jessica, have stayed in the house owned by Judson Randall, left, since June without paying rent. The Sewalls must leave by 5 p.m. today.

DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Times

Elizabeth Sewall, right, and her grown daughter, Jessica, have stayed in the house owned by Judson Randall, left, since June without paying rent. The Sewalls must leave by 5 p.m. today.

CLEARWATER — After nearly eight months of living in Judson Randall's house without paying any rent or utilities, Elizabeth Sewall and Jessica Sewall were ordered Thursday to leave by 5 p.m. today.

Elizabeth Sewall, 50, admitted to Circuit Judge John Schaefer during a hearing Thursday that she had no ownership rights to the house at 979 14th Ave. S in Safety Harbor.

"Mr. Randall asked you to leave, right?'' Schaefer asked.

"We don't want to stay there,'' Elizabeth Sewall answered.

Schaefer then asked her how it came to be that she and her daughter Jessica Sewall, 20, are still residing at the home.

Elizabeth Sewall said she and her daughter were living in Orlando and she had lost her job. In June, Randall, 47, an acquaintance of her sister's, had offered them a place to stay, saying "the first month is free.''

"It's an old house,'' Elizabeth Sewall said. "It was in bad condition. It was shocking. The agreement was that we would go there and fix it.''

But she said Randall did not give her and her daughter any suitable paint to do the job.

She said the pair tried to find work, "but it was impossible, there was nothing.''

She said Randall was aggressive and abusive. She said he gave her a lawn mower to cut the grass but it conked out. When her dog gave birth, she said it was Randall who pressured her to sell the puppies when they were 4 weeks old.

When a few of the pups were sold, she told the judge, Randall stole the money.

Randall denied the accusations.

After listening to Elizabeth Sewall's story, Schaefer told her that there were good intentions in the beginning but that fell apart.

"You really have no legal right to stay there,'' Schaefer said. "How long do you think it will take to move your belongings?''

Elizabeth Sewall, who said she didn't know where she and her daughter would go, indicated it would probably take more than one car trip to move their two pets, computer, coffee maker and other things.

Schaefer looked at Randall and asked him if he would be willing to give them more time to relocate.

"I don't want to give them another minute,'' Randall said.

Eileen Schulte can be reached at schulte@sptimes.com or (727) 445-4153.

Judge orders Safety Harbor squatters to move out 01/29/09 [Last modified: Thursday, January 29, 2009 8:41pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Jones: Bucs need success to get national respect

    Bucs

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones offers up his Two Cents on the world of sports.

    No respect

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field during the second day of mandatory minicamp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  2. Hopes fade after landslide destroys Chinese village (w/video)

    World

    Crews searching through the night in the rubble left by a landslide that buried a mountain village under tons of soil and rocks in southwestern China found 15 bodies, but more than 110 more people remained missing.

    Vehicles and people line a road leading to the site of a landslide in Xinmo village in Mao County on Saturday in southwestern China’s Sichuan Province. More than 100 people remained missing after the village was buried under tons of rocks and soil.
  3. Rookie Jake Faria dissatisfied with performance in Rays' loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The rookie pitcher walked to his locker Saturday after tossing the fourth quality start in as many tries to begin his career. He held the potent Orioles bats to three runs and for six innings gave his team a chance to win.

    Orioles third baseman Manny Machado tags out the Rays’ Mallex Smith at third after a rundown in the first inning.
  4. Thousands converge in two St. Pete locations celebrating LGBT rights

    Human Interest

    ST. PETERSBURG — Tom Rockhill didn't know what to expect Saturday, but by noon people were knocking on the door of his bar Right Around the Corner in Grand Central.

    (From left to right) Emma Chalut 18, gets a rainbow sticker on her cheek from her sister Ellie, 15 both of Jacksonville before the annual St. Pete Pride parade in downtown St. Petersburg on Saturday. This year the route was changed from the Grand Central and Kenwood area to Bayshore Drive.
[EVE EDELHEIT   |   Times]
  5. Retired Florida Supreme Court Justice Parker Lee McDonald dies

    TALLAHASSEE — A former Florida Supreme Court justice, who wrote a decision that prevented lawyers from excluding jurors because of their race, has died.

    Former Florida Supreme Court Justice Parker Lee McDonald died Saturday, the court said in a statement. He was 93.