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Facing Foreclosure, Akhom Phetphanh Pledges to Stay in His Home of 20 years

Akhom and his son Ty in front of their longtime home in Rochester









See Akhom's Letter to EverBank Below...


Open Letter to Everbank from Akhom Phetphanh in Rochester, NY

Fannie Mae Calls Off Brooks Ave. Eviction Amid Community Pressure

On the evening of June 11, 2013 a Representative from Fannie Mae called Renee Madison to notify her that the imminent eviction of her family has been called off as they re-review her case.  This is after Renee Brooks defied her 72 hour eviction notice (which expired June 6, 2013) and Take Back the Land Rochester, community supporters, and her neighbors rallied to stop the eviction and demand Fannie Mae negotiate a settlement so the family can stay in their home of 17 years.  For more background see Renee's public letter to Fannie Mae.

Eviction Protest to the Stop Unjust Foreclosure-Based Eviction of Renee Madison and her Family


On Monday, June 10, 2013, at 612 Brooks Ave., Rocheter, NY 14619 Renee Madison, Take Back the Land Rochester, and other community supporters rallied to demand the Fannie Mae withdraw's the unjust eviction of Renee Madison and her family.  The family has lived in their home for 17 years and Renee Madison is looking to buy the house back but the bank has shown no willingness to wait to work out a settlement.  Ms. Madison has lupus and Graves disease but that has not deterred Fannie Mae trying to forcefully evict the family.  


Renee Madison at 612 Brooks Ave. Pledges to Stay in Her Home

See her open letter to Fannie Mae...

Open Letter to Fannie Mae from Renee Madison in Rochester, NY

Federal National Mortgage Association

Attorneys: Rosicki and Rosicki, P.C.

Attn: Gillian Brown and Ralph Bernard

51 East Bethpage RoadPlainview, NY 11803


June 6, 2013

Dear Federal National Mortgage Association, a/k/a Fannie Mae,

My name is Renee Madison and I live at 612 Brooks Ave., Rochester, NY 14619 where I’ve lived for 17 years with my family. I live here with my two daughters and my partner.  After I was unjustly foreclosed on, Fannie Mae bought my house at auction and is now trying to evict my family.  Fannie Mae sent the Rochester City Marshal to my door to deliver a 72 hour eviction notice on Monday, June 3, 2013. I am requesting that you immediately stay the eviction and so my family has time to buy the house back.

In 2006 my Mom took out a mortgage with GMAC.  Without our knowledge GMAC transferred the mortgage to MERS and then my understanding is that the mortgage was illegally robo-signed over to NationStar. Despite this, NationStar took over the mortgage and fraudulently foreclosed on my family.

Mary Smith Pledges to Stay in Her Rochester Home Resisting Foreclosure by American Tax Funding


Facing foreclosure, Mary of Smith of 53 Cutler Street, Rochester, NY 14621, is pledging to stay in her home and not let American Tax Funding put her out of her longtime home.  Take Back the Land Rochester is pledging to support her. Mary and her community are prepared to nonviolently resist attempts to displace if necessary.  Her house is scheduled to go to auction 10am February 26 at the Monroe County Office Building. A petition circulated both by door-to-door canvassing and online posting is calling for ATF to call off the auction and negotiate. Over 525 signatures have been received to date and the number continues to grow.  

Mary Smith has lived at 53 Cutler Street for 30 years, raising six children. She paid off her mortgage to ES&L 12 years ago. She is the Vice President of the Cutler Street Plus Block Club and has been a commanding force in the community for decades. She is affectionately known as the "Mayor of Cutler Street," who has severed hundreds of hotdogs to neighbor kids at kickball games. In her dining room she displays a large promotional poster featuring her as a poster person for volunteerism.  


Take Back the Land Condemns Rochester Police “Shoot-to-Evict” Approach to Evict Formerly Homeless Man

Take Back the Land Rochester Calls for an Independent Investigation and Re-evaluation of Police Involvement in Evictions

Based on the facts currently known, Take Back the Land Rochester strongly condemns the shooting of Timothy Powell, a formerly homeless man,  by the Rochester police as a means of evicting him from his State St. apartment on January 29, 2013 in Rochester.  The shooting was 1) grossly disproportionate, 2) negligent in that neither the Family Crisis Intervention Team (FACIT) or the Emotionally Disturbed Person Response Team (EDPRT) were called to the incident—both teams specially designed to deescalate these situations and prevent these tragedies,  and 3) a grave escalation in Rochester Police Department’s frightening trend toward harsh tactics in handling evictions. Further, an independent investigator and Special prosecutor should be appointed to impartially investigate the shooting and police procedures around use of force and evictions.

Take Back the Land Rochester in the Chicago Sun Times With Chicago Anti-Eviction Campaign

The Chicago Anti-Eviction Campaign was born out almost out of necessity, according to founder and chair J.R. Fleming.

In 2009, Chicago - as was much of the nation - was bearing the brunt of the home foreclosure crisis. More and more people were evicted as property owners were losing their buildings to foreclosures. In October that year, a United Nations housing mission came to Chicago on a fact-finding trip to look at the housing crisis.

Toussaint Losier, CAEC vice chairperson, was organizing the mission on the U.N. side as a volunteer at the time.

J.R. Fleming, the CAEC chair, was involved in a steering committee that helped arrange for the U.N. group to visit Chicago. In 2009, he was doing anti-eviction work for the then still-standing Cabrini Green housing project.

"Chicago was our first stop," Losier said, on a tour of seven U.S. cities.

He was also doing work for the Western Cape Anti-Eviction Campaign and fighting for residents in South Africa. He said he saw parallels in the Chicago housing troubles to those in Cape Town. After its fact-finding trip, the U.N. mission had challenged Chicago to get involved with anti-eviction work as a human rights issue, and the Chicago Anti-Eviction Campaign was born.

The CAEC and groups like it across the U.S. are starting to combine their efforts.

Ryan Acuff, founder of Take Bake the Land in Rochester, N.Y., said groups like his and the CAEC have a common goal to make housing permanently affordable.

"We're trying to turn around and reorganize housing as a human right," he said.

Victory on Barlett Street: Windom Family Get Back their Home for the Holidays after 18 year Struggle and Several Protests

Mary Windom Bey

 On Friday, December 21, 2012 at 1pm at 33 Bartlett St., Rochester, NY the Windom Bey family, Take Back the Land Rochester, and other community members will gather, hold a press conference and announce an incredible turnaround and victory for THE Windom Bey family.  The Windom’s struggle and the community protests became front page news of the Democrat and Chronicle and the Daily Record over the summer as the family became deadlocked with the City of Rochester in their fight to stay in their home of 40 years following an unjust tax foreclosure.  After two planned eviction blockades twice thwarted the eviction of the family from their home, the City and investor Sure Luck Homes 017, LLC changed their tuned as the Windom Bey family closed on the house last Friday getting the home back in their name.  After an 18 year struggle with the City of Rochester and later American Tax Funding and Sure Luck Homes 017, LLC the family now has the house back, giving them clean title for the time after being in the house almost 40 years. 

Timeline of the Protests


Take Back the Land Rochester Joins Family In Protest at City Hall to Defend Their Home

Windom-Bey Family Demands City of Rochester Stop Blocking Settlement for Family to Reacquire Their 40 Year Home

On Monday, September 10 at Noon, Eddie and Mary Windom Bey (who are facing imminent eviction), Take Back the Land Rochester, Band of Rebels, Metro Justice, and other community members will hold a protest at the front steps of Rochester City Hall at 30 Church St.  The Windom Bey family is taking their fight to defend their home at 33 Bartlett St. to City Hall in order to protest Mayor Richards administration's actions to block a settlement with the current owners which would allow the Windom Bey family to buy back their longtime home and fix it up.

Wells Fargo Scheduled to Show Cause on Fraudulent Foreclosure of Leonard Spears in State Supreme Court


On Wednesday, August 1, 10:00am Leonard Spears and Wells Fargo are scheduled to appear in State Supreme Court in front of Judge Bellini at the Hall of Justice, 99 Exchange Blvd.   The case was adjourned on July 11 when neither lawyers or a representative from Wells Fargo showed up to defend taking Mr. Spears home (see coverage in Democrat and ChronicleDaily Record, and Minority Reporter.

Judge Bellini has ordered that the eviction be halted and that Wells Fargo must show case for what appears to be fraudulent foreclosure.

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