HOUSTON – A group of Cinco Ranch residents came to help a woman evicted from her home and living in a tent on her front yard.
Gerlene Friedman, 77, told KPRC2 she was evicted from her home because she fell behind on her payments.
Deputy constables with Precinct 3 evicted her and moved her belongings out onto the front lawn at 4618 Stackstone Lane.
“I lost everything, like, overnight,” Gerlene said.
Friedman said she has been in the hospital a lot within the past year. The bank approved her for a reverse mortgage, but she was unable to pay $20,000 in taxes.
“It’s heartbreaking,” her son Theodore Friedman said.
A notice sent two weeks ago said officials would evict the mother and son at 11:31 a.m. Tuesday. It was the same day doctors released Friedman from the hospital. According to the note, her belongings would be placed inside a storage unit.
“The bank said, 'Can you have the medical paperwork faxed to us and we will work on getting you an extension,'” she said. “(The bank said) 'I'm sure due to your sickness we can arrange it.'”
Friedman said a judge and the bank approved the extension at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday. Unfortunately, it was too late.
She said about an hour and a half earlier deputies had knocked on her door.
“He says, 'You're out of the house,'” she said. “Nothing was wrapped, nothing was packed, and they threw it out here.”
The family filed a complaint with the Fort Bend County Precinct 3 Constable’s Office and are now pursuing a lawsuit.
“I'm 77. I'm still feisty. And I'm not gonna put up with your crap,” she said.
Constable Rob Cook with Precinct 3 told KPRC 2 that the law allows them to evict someone 24 hours after a notice is served. In Friedman's case, Constable Cook said the bank allowed her 12 extra days to move out but when officers arrived at the home, Cook said there had been no effort on Friedman's part to move out.
Cook also said Friedman refused to leave the property and had to be escorted out of the home.
Several Cinco Ranch residents arrived to help Friedman move her belongings off her front yard on Thursday and the Fort Bend County Sheriff's Office contacted Social Services to help arrange for temporary housing for Friedman.