Local News

Tenant says she's being evicted for feeding stray cat

Posted June 17, 2009 6:26 p.m. EDT
Updated June 17, 2009 6:34 p.m. EDT

— Tenants at a Rocky Mount subsidized-living apartment complex are upset over what they call "bullying" by their property management.

But the complex says some of it is just a misunderstanding.

Bernice Fuller, a 76-year-old resident at Mayfair Apartments, said the property management, Wellons Foundation Management Services, sent her an eviction notice informing her that she had to be out of her home by July 6 because she had been feeding a stray cat.

Fuller said she and her neighbors would feed the cat, and one day they received letter from the apartment management informing them that feeding strays was not allowed.

Soon after, Fuller said, the property manager saw her leaving food for it and sent her an eviction notice.

"She acted like a little old Hitler," Fuller said. "You know, do as I say, or else."

Property management said Fuller violated the pet regulations by not filing the paper work or paying the required fee for keeping a cat.

Fuller said that because the cat was a stray, it was not a pet. She said being evicted for that reason is too harsh.

Other neighbors have also complained, saying management recently forced them to rip out all the flowers in their gardens by June 15.

Property managers said it was a misunderstanding and that they only asked that flower boxes and pots be removed from windows and doors under fire regulations imposed by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

"We look at the community, as a whole, and we have to do what's best for the entire community," said Cathy Kennedy, executive director of operations for Wellons Foundation.

Fuller will meet with property managers Friday to find out if she is allowed to stay in her home. The Edgecombe-Nash Humane Society is now taking care of the cat.