A family facing eviction today from their longtime Citrus Heights home was given a week's reprieve from the house's new owner amid an outpouring of support after a story ran Friday in The Bee describing their plight.
Cindy Amrine and her four teenage daughters - ages 13, 15, 18 and 19 - expected to be on the sidewalk today, with nowhere even to store a lifetime's worth of belongings in cardboard boxes. But the property management company evicting them relented temporarily, giving Amrine's lawyer a week to find the family new lodgings.
"It gives us some breathing room," Amrine said Friday. "That's what we needed right now."
The offers of help that poured in Friday and today included six months of free rent from one of the city's most prominent business families, along with rent-free homes, storage spaces, and monetary donations.
Even Bank of America, which foreclosed on Amrine and auctioned her house April 22 while she was having shoulder surgery, put pressure on the new owner to give the single mother of four more time, Amrine and her lawyer, Jan Dudensing, said Friday.
Bank of America has made no statements on the case.
A lawsuit filed this week by Sacramento attorney Dudensing claims BofA violated the state's new homeowner bill of rights by evicting Amrine just as she was near to concluding a short sale approved by the bank.
The lawsuit received attention for its novel claim that Amrine's case constituted dual tracking, a practice now forbidden by the landmark law in which banks negotiate a foreclosure alternative with a borrower while moving forward with foreclosure.
Amrine said she expected to receive $20,000 in relocation assistance from Bank of America as part of the short sale. Banks have been offering such assistance to certain homeowners for the past two years.
Amrine said the money would have allowed her to rent a house for a year, following a nasty divorce, joblessness and a lack of child support from her ex-husband.
Instead, she said earlier this week, she and her daughters faced the prospect of staying in an emergency shelter or breaking up the close-knit family and having the girls stay at the homes of friends and relatives.
They did not know what would happen to their two dogs and four cats, all of which were rescued by the family as homeless strays.
Call The Bee's Hudson Sangree, (916) 321-1191.