Appeal scheduled for judge's dismissal of wrongful eviction case

 March 23, 2024

This story was originally published by the WND News Center.

A court appeal is being planned for a judge's decision in a case involving wrongful eviction – when authorities who knew the wrong person was being targeted and were given a valid lease to review, still threw a blind man and his two daughters into the street during a snowstorm.

The word comes from the Rutherford Institute, which is working on the case Murphy v. Delaware on behalf of William Murphy and his daughters, ages 11, and 17.

The problem is that government officials "knowingly" enforced an eviction order against the wrong person.

But the district court denied claims that the officials violated the Americans with Disabilities Act as well as the Fourth and 14th Amendments with their "evict first, ask questions later" attitude.

"With every ruling handed down, it becomes more apparent that we live in an age of hollow justice," explained constitutional lawyer John Whitehead, chief of the institute.

"Increasingly, the courts have become fixated on siding with the government against rather than with safeguard the rights enshrined in the Constitution."

Rutherford explained, "William Murphy, a blind, 52-year-old widower, and his two daughters, aged 17 and 11, moved to Wilmington, Del., in order to be closer to other family members. Murphy and his daughters moved into a 775-square-foot rowhouse on Nov. 17, 2020, under a one-year rental lease for $750 per month along with rental assistance from Social Services. The landlord complained about a delay with receiving the partial rent payment from Social Services, and in Feb. 2021, the water and electricity to the home were shut off in violation of state law and the landlord allegedly made a veiled threat. Then, on the morning of Feb. 11, during a bitterly cold snowstorm, constables arrived at the Murphy home, ordered them to vacate the premises, and gave the family 30 minutes to collect their belongings and leave. Even though the person named in the eviction Order was someone other than Murphy, and despite Murphy showing proof of a signed lease in good standing, Murphy and his daughters were still ordered to leave the home, unable to take most of their personal possessions with them, and were left to challenge the wrongful eviction in court. One week later, a state magistrate judge found the Murphys had been unlawfully ousted from their home and that the landlord had weaponized a writ of eviction for a previous female tenant to wrongfully evict Murphy and his daughters."

Whitehead explained because the error should have been obvious, a federal civil rights complaint was filed against those responsible for tossing the family into the street.

The district court, however, dismissed the case, and that ruling now is being appealed.

WND reported when the case arose that the eviction notice was in the name of Viola Wilson, and the constables had admitted Murphy was not, in fact, Wilson.

Wilson reportedly was the name of a previous tenant in the home.

When the courts originally ruled that the eviction was improper, Murphy chose to cancel the rest of the lease and moved into other accommodations.

Latest News

© 2024 - Patriot News Alerts