Chicago family fights 'pro squatter' who took over dead mom's home, left bullet hole in window
A Chicago woman said a squatter with a long criminal history has taken over her dead mother’s home and has refused to leave since September.
Darthula Young told CBS Chicago this week that she received a call from neighbors in September that there had been a shooting inside the Chatham neighborhood home that her mother had left to the family after she died.
When Young arrived at the home, the locks had been changed and there was a bullet hole in the front window, she told the outlet.
"The person who had been shot in the apartment – this guy named Takito Murray - came back from the hospital, and informed us and the police that he now lived there, that he had rights – he was professional squatter," Young said.
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Young said Chicago police told her she needs to go through the court system and she has been trying to do so with no success since September.
"It's been a nightmare," Young said.
CBS Chicago reported that Murray has been arrested for drug and weapons charges at least six times since 2017 and the outlet was able to confront Murray outside the home.
"I'm in the process of finding somewhere to stay," Murray told the outlet. "You can't just move like that."
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Murray claims he is planning on leaving sometime in April or May, but Young said he routinely claims to be leaving soon and then stays put.
"Every time I've been there, he tells me he's leaving in two weeks," Young said. "He's leaving in two weeks. He just cannot find a place."
"So you acknowledge that it was her mom's building – that her mom owned it?" reporter Charlie De Mar asked Murray.
"Yes, I guess I acknowledge – her mom and her siblings, that was their building," Murray responded. He said he is renting the property from one of Young’s siblings but could not provide proof.
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Young said the city has not shut off the water since someone is technically living there, and she is on the hook for a $1,300 bill.
Michael Zink, a landlord-tenant attorney who is not involved with the case, told the outlet that evictions of squatters in Chicago can take six to eight months via the legal system.
"The problem that police have is when they show up to a scene like that, they don't know who is telling the truth," Zink said.
Zink said squatting in Chicago is on the rise and Fox News Digital reported earlier this month that squatters in the very same Chatham neighborhood had taken over the home of another woman’s deceased mother and claimed to be living there legally.