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Wednesday, March 28, 2001
OCALA — For the second time in a year, an Ocala widow was within a whisper of losing her home for not paying a debt. And for the second time, she won a last-minute reprieve.
Attorneys for GMAC Mortgage agreed to suspend the sale of Anne Grove's home until a determination can be made on her mental competency. The home, in Silver Meadows North, was scheduled to go up for auction on the steps of the Marion County Courthouse on Tuesday morning.
Robert Landt, a court appointed attorney representing Grove, filed a motion last week requesting a stay until he could investigate the case. A circuit judge approved the stay Tuesday.
GMAC Mortgage would not discuss specifics of the foreclosure action, saying only that they're "looking into the matter and would not comment further on the case." Asked if they're going to go forward with the foreclosure, spokesperson Joan Dalfarra said she's "not at liberty to disclose that."
Grove, who was not present at the hearing in the judge's chambers, declined to comment when contacted later.
Grove, a 74-year-old widow, was forcibly removed from her home by Marion County deputies last April for failing to pay her homeowner's association fees estimated at $1,200 over a six-year period. The home, valued at about $151,000, was sold at auction for $2,400.
But an ensuing public outcry prompted the buyer of the home, local attorney David Midgett, to turn the home back over to Grove. At the time, Grove said she didn't pay the homeowners association fees because she "ran out of money."
Almost immediately, Grove fell into another financial hole. According to court records, she stopped paying her $790.90 mortgage in June, 2000. GMAC began foreclosure proceedings shortly after.
After she was evicted from her home last April, and her plight became public, several groups have stepped forward to offer their help, but Grove has repeatedly refused help from sheriff's deputies and Marion County Senior Services. In a last ditch effort to help her, the state sought the services of Guardianship and Probate Services, Inc. in Weirsdale. That agency became the emergency temporary guardian for Grove.
"That was when I went to Landt to help us out on this case because it seemed like GMAC had no knowledge of what was going on," said Teresa Houston, attorney for the agency, who specializes in elder law and guardianship. "She might have a problem understanding what needs to be done."
Landt, who got the case 10 days ago, immediately filed a motion to head off the foreclosure.
"I wanted them to give us time to sort this out and let us make a determination to know what's going on with her right now," Landt said.
Grove will be evaluated before the case goes back to court.
"The court is going to appoint an examining committee made up of a psychiatrist, psychologist and a social worker or nurse to sit down with her to find out if she comprehends what's happening to her," Houston said.
Austin L. Miller covers veterans issues and can be reached at email@example.com or 867-4128.
David Midgett purchased this property at a foreclosure auction for $2100 last year but filed a Quit Claim Deed attempting to return the property, located at 6130 NE 61st Avenue Road in Ocala, Florida, to Anne Grove.
READ THE WHOLE STORY AND HOW IT STARTED!
THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE FIFTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT IN AND FOR MARION COUNTY,
CIVIL ACTION CASE NO. 00-1639 CA DIVISION B
GMAC MORTGAGE CORPORATION F/K/A GMAC MORTGAGE CORPORATION OF PA,
DAVID E. MIDGETT, AS TRUSTEE OF AN UNNAMED TRUST, et al,
NOTICE OF FORECLOSURE SALE
NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN pursuant to a Final Judgment of Mortgage Foreclosure dated March 01, 2001 and entered in Case NO. 00-1639 CA of the Circuit Court of th e FIFTH Judicial Circuit in and for MARION County, Florida wherein GMAC MORTGAGE CORPORATION F/K/A GMAC MORTGAGE CORPORATION OF PA, is the Plaintiff and DAVID E. MIDGETT, AS TRUSTEE OF AN UNAMED TRUST; THE UNKNOWN BENEFICIARIES OF AN UNAMED TRUST; DAVID E. MIDGETT, INDIVIDUALLY; ANNE M. GROVE; ANY AND ALL UNKNOWN PARTIES CLAIMING BY, THROUGH, UNDER, AND AGAINST THE HEREIN NAMED INDIVIDUAL DEFENDANT(S) WHO ARE NOT KOWN TO BE DEAD OR ALIVE, WHETHER SAID UNKNOWN PARTIES MAY CLAIM AN INTEREST AS SPOUSES, HEIRS, DEVISEES, GRANTEES, OR OTHER CLAIMANTS; STEVE SHAW, AS TRIUSTEE OF THE 6130 LAND TRUST DATED DECEMBER 11, 2000; are the Defendants, I will sell to the highest and best bidder for cash at THE LOBBY OF THE MARION COUNTY JUDICIAL CENTER, 110 NORTH-WEST FIRST AVENUE. OCALA, FLORIDA 34475 at 11:00AM, on the 2ND day of APRIL, 2001, the following described property as set forth in the said Final Judgement:
ALL THAT LAND LOCATED IN THE COUNTY OF MARION, STATE OF FLORIDA DESCRIBED AS: LOT 4, BLOCK C, SILVER MEADOWS NORTH, ACCORDING TO THE PLAT THEREOF, RECORDED IN PLAT BOOK 1, PAGES 71 THROUGH 75, INCLUSIVE OF THE PUBLIC RECORDS OF MARION COUNTY, FLORIDA.
A/K/A 6130 NE 61st Avenue Rd, Silver Springs, FL 34488
WITNESS MY HAND and the seal of the Court on March 1st, 2001.
David R. Ellspermann