Lakeland, Florida -- Polk County Sheriff's deputies arrested a woman after she illegally moved into a foreclosed home in Lakeland.
The investigation began at the end of March,
when Cynthia Westley reached an amicable foreclosure agreement with
her lender and voluntarily vacated her home in
Westley made frequent visits to the home to maintain its upkeep.
On March 29, Westley noticed
the locks had been changed and unfamiliar items had been moved into the house. She contacted the lender, who told her they had not put new locks on the
house and denied granting anyone permission to enter the residence.
then contacted Polk County Sheriff's Office.
Deputies arrived on scene and found 31-year-old Stacey Ann Fuchs living inside the
home. Fuchs told the deputies that she had researched "adverse possession" on the Internet, and based on the information she found
online, felt it was her right to move into the vacated home.
Fuchs also admitted
to changing the locks on the house. Fuchs was placed under arrest and booked
into the Polk County Jail on one count burglary and one count grand theft.
Deputies previously arrested Lessie Hurd in a similar, unrelated investigation. Hurd also changed the locks on a different house and claimed "adverse possession."
In light of these burglaries deputes are encouraging people to frequently visit their property and report any suspicious activity.