Alleged Squatters Have Yard Sale of Iraq War Vet’s Possessions

By Amanda Carey

Feb 1, 2012 3:51pm

The wife of a soldier returning from his third deployment in Iraq is “sick” that alleged squatters took over her house and sold off her possessions in a yard sale.

Hollie Burbank was relocating  her family from Splendora, Texas, to the military base of Fort Hood, Texas, now that her husband has returned from Iraq.

The unoccupied home in Splendora was taken over by squatters, police told ABC News. 

Hollie Burbank received a phone call from a relative in Liberty on Tuesday, Jan. 31 because the relative had seen belongings in the yard Hollie shares with her husband Sam, who just returned from his third tour in Iraq, and two children.

Hollie Burbank called the Liberty County sheriff’s office. “Deputies went to the house, people were there for what looked like a yard sale, looking at belongings and purchasing for cash,” Capt. Rex Evans told ABC News.

Faylisa Bailey, 30, and Johnny Bell, 47, took over the home while the Burbanks’ were away and were selling the family’s possessions, Evans said. Furniture, children’s clothes, toys, family heirlooms and antique jewelry were among the items on the lawn for sale.

“Two suspects indicated they were renting the house and it was their stuff to sell.  It was all false,”  said Evans.

“Myself, deputies and local firefighters were able to salvage some of it and put it back in the shed on the property,” the captain said.

Deputies found evidence of methamphetamine use inside the home, Evans said. He said both Bailey and Bell were arrested on drug charges.

“It makes me sick,” Burbank told ABC News affiliate KTRK.  “They just walked in trying to take over my house and that’s just not right.”

Burbank is returning to her home from Fort Hood to file federal burglary charges.


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