In the land of the free, even if you fully pay off your home loan to the bank, your property is never truly yours. Through property tax, states from coast to coast continue to charge you for land that you own. As the following case illustrates, even if you pay these taxes to the state — but they lose track of the payment — they can and will steal your home right out from under you. Paraplegic blind women in wheelchairs are no exception when it comes to the cruel and inhumane nature of the state.
Barbara Ryan, 57, did everything she was supposed to do. She paid off her $650,000 home in a cul-de-sac in South Charlotte and paid the state their share so they wouldn’t steal her home. But thanks to an “error” in the Mecklenburg County accounting system, armed agents of the state showed up to her home on Feb. 4, 2019, and threw this paraplegic, legally blind woman out on the street.
On that dark day, Mecklenburg County sheriff’s deputies, armed with a court order, showed up to Ryan’s home to tell her that she no longer owned it. Because she wasn’t fully dressed, was in a wheelchair, and is also legally blind, Ryan took longer than the deputies were willing to wait to open her door — so they started breaking windows and broke into her home.
After detaining her for several hours, these “hero” deputies then forcibly removed the woman from her home.
As deputies wheeled her from the home, half-dressed, another deputy threw a pair of pants that were several sizes too small at her, saying, “those or nothing.”
Deputies refused to allow her to grab anything else. As she rolled into the front yard, Ryan called multiple taxis in an attempt to go to the courthouse and straighten out this misunderstanding, and each time, the deputies would wave them on.
“You won’t need that where you’re going,” a deputy told Ryan before attempting to have her involuntarily committed to a state mental institution.
As she was not mentally ill, her commitment was unsuccessful and because the state stole her home, she had nowhere to go when she was released from the hold 2 days later. This legally blind paraplegic woman was left out on the street in the middle of the winter, forced to sleep in a parking garage to avoid freezing to death.
Since deputies had refused to allow her to grab clothes, a phone, money, credit cards, even socks and shoes before kicking her out — she had nothing. She would roll herself into an elevator in a parking garage to sleep for nearly two weeks as she tried every day to talk to someone to fix this mess.
She couldn’t go back home because the couple who bought the house from the county had already moved in.
When Ryan was finally able to talk to one of the thieves who stole her home, she was told she no longer owned it and it now belonged to a developer. The court had made a massive blunder and claimed that Ryan owed back taxes to Mecklenburg County. But she did not.