The Press release for last Friday:
NEW YORK, NY – Ms. Mary Lee Ward, an 82 year-old African American grandmother who resides at 320 Tompkins Avenue, Bedford-Stuyvesant Brooklyn, is facing a foreclosure related eviction from her home of 44 years this Friday the 19th at 9am.
The current owner, “768 Dean Inc,” holder of scores of other properties in the neighborhood, has hired a marshal to remove her from the premises at that time. A NYC based organization plans on being there too.
The group, calling itself Organizing for Occupation or O4O, has vowed to defend Ms. Ward and block the eviction, even if it means engaging in non-violent civil disobedience in order to force the NYC marshal to back down. Their website (www.o4onyc.org) will live stream from Ms. Ward’s house.
O4O is calling for folks to gather at 320 Tompkins Ave this Friday morning.
Ms. Ward—like so many in Bed-Stuy— is a victim of deceptive and predatory lending practices perpetrated by banks and speculators. Her lender, Delta Funding, was shut down by the government for preying upon elderly people of color in Queens and Brooklyn. The broker at Tarheel Funding lost his license and was prosecuted for fraud.
But her loan lived on, bought and sold by different financial institutions over the course of ten years. When the house was sold at auction in 2008, estate speculator “768 Dean Inc” picked it up as lucrative asset in a changing neighborhood.
According to Jay Kim, Esq. of non-profit Common Law, Inc., “Ms. Ward’s case exemplifies the systematic destruction of wealth and stability in communities of color in New York City. We must not allow NYC communities to be brutalized any longer.”
There is a handful of coverage of Friday’s events at