My father recently moved from a home. We rented the home for 4 years. My parents divorced and my dad had to move due to how high bills were. The original landlord sold the home and the home now has new landlords. Due to some mishaps and miscommunication, the gas stove and refrigerator were taken. The new landlords have asked for the items back. A detective called my father and said that if he returned the items, everything would be fine. The landlords lawyer was to contact my father regarding this but never did (my father was instructed to not contact the landlords since they are being represented by an attorney) 3 weeks pass by, and the list of "missing items" have grown to many other things that my father does not have (wooden shelf, handles, little things) that were also never mentioned in a previous hearing or any other time by the detective. The total amount equals over $5000 and the detective has threatened serving my father a warrant because it would be a Felony 5. The landlords said they will settle for $3000, which is coincidentally what they did not win in the first hearing.
This sounds fishy. The part that concerns me most is that there is a detective involved, which is a bit surprising. It sounds like at best a weak case and at least somewhat of an attempted shakedown. Because the police are involved, I would suggest that he at least speak with an attorney. If he is of limited means he might be able to get help from legal aid, and even if not there are attorneys who will provide an initial consultation for free or at a discounted rate. Look on Avvo and/or contact your local bar association for a referral. I would not just give in without first seeking counsel. I suspect a letter in response from counsel would resolve a lot of this quickly. Best of luck to you.
Since criminal charges might be possible, I would seek counsel from a criminal defense attorney. I am not sure what, "Due to some mishaps and miscommunication, the gas stove and refrigerator were taken" really means, and you should not try to explain on this or any other website.
Also, since the return of personal property is at issue, you want to talk with an attorney who can handle what is called an action in replevin.
I hope this helps, and good luck!
Listen to Attorney Bauer. The idea that a police detective is out there attempting to negotiate/collect a debt between a landlord and a tenant doesn't pass the smell test. Your father needs to lawyer up and have them get to the bottom of this. I would not give anyone any money without being represented by your own attorney!
Mr. Esposito is a Ohio-licensed attorney only. The information is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation. Answering this question does not in any way constitute legal representation. Contacting Andrew Esposito does not constitute legal representation, nor is any information you provide protected by attorney-client privilege until otherwise advised.
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