LOS ANGELES (CBS) — The occupy movement began a new campaign Tuesday called “Occupy Our Homes” in an effort to retake properties that have been foreclosed on by mortgage holders.

About 50 people descended on a Riverside residence to move an evicted man back into the house he lost. Art De Los Santos blames his foreclosure on a bank’s refusal to negotiate with him on a modified mortgage.

He and other supporters of the “National Reoccupy Homes Day” event forced their way into the vacant three-bedroom, three-bath residence at 3270 Layton Court, in the city’s La Sierra neighborhood, at 3:50 p.m., carrying in furniture, including a cabinet, chairs and flat-screen television.

“I don’t know if this is gonna work,” said de los Santos, a 46-year-old metal worker and former U.S. Marine who was kicked out of the single-story house in July. “If I get arrested, it’s still worth it. I’m trying to get their (the bank’s) attention,” he told City News Service.

Demonstrators at De Los Santos’ former home were bused in by sponsors of the effort, including ReFund California, The New Bottom Line, ACCE, Take Back the Land, SOUL, the Service Employees International Union and New York Communities for Change.

They hung signs on the street-facing sides of the property. One stated: “JP Morgan Chase and Freddie Mac Aren’t Taking Our Home.” Another read, “Hold Banks Accountable.”

The protesters, including an 86-year-old woman with 32 grandchildren, circled the house, chanting, “Banks got bailed out; we got sold out!”

De Los Santos purchased the house in 2003 but fell behind on his mortgage payments in 2009, after business plummeted at the Santa Ana factory in which he’s employed as a supervisor.

He applied for a loan modification to pare down his monthly principal and interest costs, but he alleges representatives of Chase bank refused to accept the proposed terms and initiated foreclosure proceedings, forcing him and his family to vacate the home in July. The house has remained vacant since.

“He knew what was going on and had an attorney, trying to get this resolved and have the foreclosure rescinded,” said Francisco Perpely with Alpha One Group, a Riverside brokerage firm that took possession of the property on behalf of Freddy Mac, which underwrote Chase’s loan to de los Santos.

“The bank was more than helpful with him, trying to offer relocation assistance,” Perpely told CNS. “It ended up going to court, and a judge issued a writ (evicting de los Santos from the property).”

According to the broker, the house is now in legal “limbo” because de los Santos has filed for bankruptcy, listing the property among his assets.

According to Peggy Mears with the advocacy group Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment, this is just the beginning of the reoccupation campaign.

“Our goal is for the bank to work with this family on a meaningful (loan) modification,” Mears told CNS. “We will stay here until that happens or until the police tear down the door.”

Mears said 30 similar reclamations were undertaken nationwide today — in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

Comments (17)
  1. Growapair says:

    I’m going to the Occupy West Hollywood event. I hope to find someone to occupy a tent with me. We can roast smores.

    1. jason zeidler says:

      wg/af dude you use the same lame ass stupid insults in every post. what are you 14? you obviously dont have brains or balls. seriously no wonder your mom abandonded you to join the tj donkey show. still waiting for you to swing by and try to show me how tough you are punk…i didnt forget you. you are the perfect ows spokesperson, ignorant rude, lame and about as brave as a chihuahua behing the fence. you want to critisize others for hiding, i gave you my name and addy and you still dont have the sac to come to my place, what you afraid of Wus Girl / Azzlicking Fruit

      1. Growapair says:

        jason zeidler

        I don’t need to go to your address puS$y dumbf**k. I can’t talk all the sh!t I want from the protection of my own home, aS$hat.

  2. kh says:

    i am sick of your mouth you comment on every about balls go back to school and get a real education your so stupid talking like this you need some help CBS figure a way to stop him from posting fowl words come on all ready we are sick of it

    1. Debra R Steinman says:

      Describing yourself again ‘dearie’?

    2. db says:


      We are all sick of him. All he does is curse like a 13 year old and he won’t use his real name, just multiple screen names, i.e., wg//af, up//yours, grow//apair, or gro//apair. He’s a real tough guy wouldn’t you say? He could be a young kid or schizophrenic. I’ve contacted CBS about him. Here is there contact info. Maybe multiple complaints will help “fix the glitch.”
      CBS Studio City Broadcast Center
      4200 Radford Avenue
      Studio City, CA 91604
      Phone: 818-655-2000

    3. Nomechifles says:

      Yeah, it’s funny how growapair refers to others as posers to try and cover his own tracks. He doesn’t even use his real name, what an idiot. The guy has mental health issues.

  3. defecating_warrior says:

    Liberal, Neo-conservative useful idiots and critics of Assembly, and frankly haters of truth and freedom, exist by feeding on the entrepreneurial, middle class.
    Which explains why the nation’s respect and admiration are with Occupy and with the Anonymous, Wikileaks and Ruckus brigades. Thanx for all of your service.
    For they know, proletariat’s bad children and parasites, sic Zionist apparachiks of the Fed, IMF and World Bank, will never admonish the Crony Capitalism feeding their addictions and narcissism. A special interest needful and earnest of all the hearty, steamy excrement patriots can provide. Sh!t and p!ss on, noble flea-baggers, lest the streets flow with blood.

    1. Debra R Steinman says:

      We do not ‘hate’ truth and freedom. We ‘hate’ lawless criminals like #OWS! The only thing they should be ‘occupying’ is a JAIL CELL! And the only thing YOU should be ‘occupying’ is a 101USGOVERNMENT Class … so maybe you’ll stop looking as STUPID as you SOUND!

      1. defecating_warrior says:

        Thank you for pointing out that Statism is the problem. dw.

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