Schaumburg Man to Get His Day in Court

A jury will decide if the city can fine him for living on his lawn

By Jennifer Schwarz
|  Wednesday, Sep 1, 2010  |  Updated 10:52 AM CDT
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A <a title=Schaumburg man at odds with his neighbors and the village hall is living in a van outside his home while fighting to keep it." />

A Schaumburg man at odds with his neighbors and the village hall is living in a van outside his home while fighting to keep it.

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The Schaumburg man who's been living on his lawn since foreclosure proceedings began on his suburban home, won the right to a jury trial Tuesday. 

John Wuerffel, 62, had been living in a van outside his home ever since lender, HSBC Mortgage Corp., following procedures from loan holder Freddie Mac, padlocked the door.  Wuerffel suffers from a bi-polar disorder and collects cans and other assorted trash which led Freddie Mac to believe the home was in derilict condition.

The village is asking the court to allow the cleanup of Wuerffel’s property on the 1400 block of Hampton Lane.   The lot is littered with cars and garbage.  Judges have granted two such orders since 2008.

Wuerffel is fighting the cleanup because he doesn't want the village to take away his cars and other property. He will represent himself at the trial, which begins Thursday, the Chicago Tribune reports

Associate Judge Hyman Riebman will decide whether the village should conduct another cleaning; and the jury will determine if Wuerffel is guilty and subject to a fine.

Last week Wuerffel was allowed back into his home because of a delay in the proceedings, but continues to live outside because his utilities have been disconnected. 

Officials want to clean the yard because of code violations and neighbor complaints. They might also try to clean the inside of the house, which is packed floor-to-ceiling with recyclable items.

Wuerffel is not entitled to a public defender because if convicted, he would not serve any jail time.   
 

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