Top Story of 2014: Demolition ends squatters' standoff on Shedden Road

Family of missing landfill worker Anna Evans relocated to Bodden Town

The family of missing George Town landfill worker Anna Evans, living in a house on Shedden Road – along with others – were served eviction papers on Aug. 26, setting in motion a standoff that lasted more than two months as the tenants refused to leave. 

More than 20 people from six families were living in the homes on the property. They included the five children of Anna Evans, the landfill worker who disappeared on Jan. 27, 2011, and has never been found, and their caretaker, Noreen Dixon, Mrs. Evans’s sister.  

The 0.6-acre property, purchased by Kent “Biggie” Rankin in 2007, had been subject to a court-issued Writ of Possession since Oct. 2012. After almost two years of waiting for the tenants to vacate the property, Mr. Rankin pursued the matter again through the courts, and when police arrived on Aug. 26, they boarded up windows, put up eviction notices and placed padlocks on the doors. 

Two days later, police came to replace the notices and padlocks, which had been removed by the tenants, and tried to coax the tenants to leave. One of them, Anthony Scott, sat defiantly behind his kitchen window and talked to police but refused to leave the house. 

The eviction notices gave the tenants until Oct. 15 to leave.  

Ms. Dixon attempted to find alternative housing for herself and Mrs. Evans’s five children through the Department of Children and Family Services, but as the eviction deadline neared, she and the children were still living at the house on Shedden Road.  

On Oct. 14, the court bailiff returned to the property and posted the eviction notices and “no trespassing” signs on the homes. The tenants removed the signs and posted some of their own, one of which read, “My father bought this property from the late Mac Rankine. Judges, when you dig one hole, make sure you dig two because someone else is going in the other.” It was signed by Lucy Ebanks, one of the tenants.  

The tenants didn’t leave the property on the Oct. 15 deadline, and the electricity was cut off that day. The tenants then used a portable generator to produce electricity. Even so, Mrs. Ebanks remained defiant, saying, “I’ve said it before and I am saying it again; I am not moving. They have to do what they have to do.” 

That same day, Mrs. Dixon received a call from the Department of Children and Family Services saying she should come to sign paperwork that would allow her and Mrs. Evans’s children to move into a home in Bodden Town.  

The standoff ended on Oct. 29, when police came and arrested four of the tenants, including Mrs. Ebanks and Mr. Scott, for alleged criminal trespass and criminal damage.  

Police then allowed the remaining tenants to remove their belongings from the homes before they were demolished by a backhoe. 

In December, the police confirmed that none of the four people arrested on Oct. 29 would face charges.  

Anna-Evans-eviction

Tenants of homes on Shedden Road clash with police just before the buildings were demolished.

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