Tulsa home owners being billed for demolitions they didn't want

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Reported by: MirandaChristian
Updated: 7/23/2013 9:02 am Published: 7/22/2013 10:22 pm

They bought homes that didn't exist.

In an ongoing FOX23 investigation, we've found at least three people who thought they were buying homes in Tulsa County when they bid on the properties at auction. They said they were deceived.

"Right now we live in a one-bedroom duplex," said Phyllis Boling.

Boling won a Tulsa County auction bid, but the county never handed her keys to the house, though she did get a bill.

"$5,395.71," said Boling.

That's five times what she paid to bid. As for the house, it had been demolished. Boling called FOX23 after seeing a story about two men who attended the same auction and got the same results.

Boling's problems continue to grow.

"It was going to cost us $500 and something dollars," said Boling.

That's the cost for the city to mow her lawn; the overgrowth is taller than her.

"Just like a jungle," said neighbor, Robert Johnson.

Whatever is in her yard migrates across the street, to Johnson's place.

"My wife one time found three snakes in the house," said Johnson.

FOX23 did some digging, and discovered whoever owned Boling's house had racked up nine violations over the last few years, mostly for nuisance complaints from neighbors.

"All you can do is call," said Johnson.

Multiple complaints led to the demolition. FOX23 contacted attorney Ryan Scharnell.

"They don't have to send another notice if the same issue occurs within 180 days," said Scharnell.

Scharnell said he has seen this several times, and says the city and county followed protocol. Even so, he said that doesn't mean Boling is wrong.

Scharnell told FOX23 there's room to negotiate. He also said citizens should have access to everything they need to prove case since it's public record.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

CowBot9000 - 7/23/2013 12:18 PM
0 Votes
Unless bidders were informed of a status where liens or others penalties due had been assessed against the property, this is wildly unethical & the county should be taken to court.

USEagle - 7/23/2013 9:12 AM
0 Votes
That's the stupid county for you! They don't do anything right and always want money.
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