Tenants in the dark, accuse building manager of ignoring judge's - KMOV.com

Tenants in the dark, accuse building manager of ignoring judge's orders

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Reginald Williams is accused of illegally evicting tenants. Credit: KMOV Reginald Williams is accused of illegally evicting tenants. Credit: KMOV
NORTH ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) -

"We can't cook, nothing to eat. our food's going to spoil," said Obadiah Lee. "It's crazy."

Obadiah Lee is one of over a dozen people now in the dark at his single-family home on the 3900 block of Greer Avenue in St. Louis.

The electricity shut off in their home as they battle the building manager in court.

They accuse him of illegally locking them out last month.

"It pisses me off a little bit because it doesn't make any sense," said Jennifer Boyce.

Jennifer Boyce tells News 4 the situation's hard for her 3-year-old son and her 9-year-old sister, now reading in the dark while holding a flashlight.

"It makes me want to cry a little bit, it's my first time ever going through this."

"You want convenience and comfort, you pay your rent!" said Reginald Williams.

Building manager Reginald Williams admits his name is on the electric bill but blames the tenants for being three months behind on rent.

Friday, St. Louis Circuit Court Judge Robert Dierker ordered Williams to refrain from interfering with the tenants' use of the premises, including "terminating utilities."

"There was an injunction filed against you that said you could not mess with their living arrangements until a decision was made?" asked News 4's Eric Cox.

"No, that's not true," said Williams. "The statement is 'let's get the facts right.' The facts are when you do not pay your bills you can't stay in the building."

The Arch City Defenders are representing a couple of the tenants.

The plaintiffs' attorneys filed an emergency motion's Tuesday evening, claiming Williams has violated the court's order by shutting off their power.

Depending on Judge Dierker's decision, Williams could be facing a hefty fine or even jail time.

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