‘Sovereign citizen’ fails to persuade judge that medieval laws give him claim to empty homes
An Ohio judge rejected arguments made Monday in court by a self-described “sovereign citizen” who admitted to illegally entering houses and laying claim to them.
Robert Carr was scheduled to be sentenced on one count of breaking and entering as part of a plea agreement struck earlier this month with prosecutors in Cincinnati.
But he filed a handwritten motion shortly afterward asking to withdraw his guilty plea, arguing that he believed his rights were violated prior to cutting the deal with prosecutors, who agreed to drop two other counts of breaking and entering and three counts of theft.
Carr also asked to remove his attorney, claiming “dishonesty and failure to effectively assist in counsel.”
He argued during the sentencing hearing that he’d only “tried to help out” by filing claims on properties he believed to be abandoned.
“A home or any property has been abandoned, you file claim for abandonment, and if the owner of record fails to show up, you move for a default judgment,” Carr said.
He has cited medieval British law and other obscure legal maneuvers to justify his claims to “quiet title,” saying that what he had done was no different than banks laying claim to property during the foreclosure process.
But Judge Charles Kubicki was not persuaded by Carr’s arguments and admonished him for improperly filing documents to ask for more than $234 million from the city of Forest Park, claiming officers had falsely arrested him.
The judge then sentenced Carr to seven months in prison and gave him credit for the 110 days he’s already served in jail.
More than 10 families said Carr had moved into their homes while they were away and changed the locks, but he’s been charged in only four cases.
Watch this video report posted online by WLWT-TV: