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Rochester, NY: Facing Foreclosure, Leonard Spears Pledges to Stay in His Home

May 07, 2012

From Take Back the Land Rochester:


Stop the Fraudulent Foreclosure and Eviction of Leonard Spears

Who: Leonard Spears, Take Back the Land Rochester, Band of Rebels, Occupy Rochester, and friends

What: Protest Wells Fargo's move to unjustly displace Leonard Spears from his house in Rochester 

Where: Wells Fargo, 1200 Pittsford-Victor Rd., Pittsford, NY (please contact us if you need a ride)

When: Noon Monday, May 7, 2012

Why: Because we believe in people over profit, need over greed, and community over empire

Leonard Spears and Take Back the Land Rochester are calling on the community to protest Wells Fargo and Freddie Mac's move displace Leonard from his home at 26 Ries St., Rochester, NY 14611. Despite 10-12 attempts at a mortgage modification, Wells Fargo refused to negotiate with Leonard and instead asked him to continually resubmit the same paperwork. In order to take his home as quickly as possible Wells Fargo never served Leonard the Summons and Complaint for the foreclosure action, denying him proper recourse to defend his home in court. Instead Wells Fargo fabricated the paperwork saying they served Leonard and claiming he was up to 6 feet tall with black, brown, and blond hair!  Unfortunately for Wells Fargo, Leonard is about 5'6'', bald and has never had blond or brown hair.  In a further stroke of fraud, lawyers for Wells Fargo reveal that their client didn't own the mortgage or note when they foreclosed on Leonard Spears giving them zero legal standing to foreclose in the first place.  To add insult to injury, when Wells Fargo foreclosed on Mr. Spears, they sold his house to Freddie Mac for $500.  Now Freddie Mac is trying to evict Leonard and gave him 90 days to vacate on March 30, 2012. We demand that Freddie Mac withdraw the eviction and that Wells Fargo withdraw the foreclosure and work out a reasonable settlement with Leonard.

When Wells Fargo was in desperate financial trouble they received a massive bailout of over $36 billion which they used to buy up other banks in order to become Much "Too Big to Fail."  Now Wells Fargo is trying to railroad more people out of their homes in order to turn a profit. After the bailout Wells Fargo was for forced to pay a $85 million fine for pushing borrowers into subprime loans.  Despite the bailouts and fines the government hasn't prevented a single foreclosure.  It’s up to us to bring justice to our community.  It's time we came to together as a community to stop all foreclosures and to elevate housing to a human right.

We demand that Wells Fargo and Freddie Mac withdraw the foreclosure and eviction of Leonard Spears and negotiate a reasonable settlement so he can stay in his home. 

We demand that Wells Fargo, Freddie Mac and all other bailed out banks transfer their foreclosed homes to local community land trusts, so that communities can secure local control over housing and land.  We've paid for the houses.  Now they should be turned back to the public. 

For more information contact Take Back the Land Rochester at or (585) 653-8362.  

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