Squatters stalk Seattle woman at her for-sale house

Puget Sound's housing prices continue to rise. (AP file photo)

Lisa bought her Seattle home in 2011, in a neighborhood generally considered to be among the city’s most well-to-do.

After deciding to sell the property this year, she and her agent spent three months getting the home in perfect market condition.

RELATED: Dori says City of Seattle’s stance on squatters is hypocritical

But 10 days after the for-sale sign went up outside, Lisa started to notice troubling occurrences — hoses spread across the yard that were turned on, and a  man sitting in her driveway one evening who told, not only Lisa but also her neighbors, that he was the new property owner. Lisa said that the man, who was a complete stranger, did not look like the sort of person who would be buying a house like hers.

“This is a multi-million-dollar property, and you don’t want to make judgments based on someone’s appearance, but you can tell something is off,” Lisa told KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson.

On Monday evening, Lisa walked onto her property to find the house broken into, tents set up across the yard, and a closet created out of the patio.

“I screamed bloody murder the second I walked into my home because I didn’t know if somebody else was in the house,” she said.

Luckily, neighbors immediately heard Lisa’s screams and ran to her aid. They called police and fixed the part of the door that had been broken.

“It was a terrifying situation — I’m a single woman … I’m terrified to go back to my own home,” Lisa described.

A police officer arrived at the scene and located the two squatters. However, when he called for backup, he did not receive the help he needed. Because of sheer numbers, the single police officer was not able to confront and arrest the two squatters.

“That’s a police force issue … It’s concerning to me how few officers we have on-duty every night in large areas in this city,” Lisa said.

She was told the next night that there were only three officers on-duty throughout Ballard, Queen Anne, and Magnolia.

“No wonder one of these guys couldn’t get backup … these [squatters] should have been arrested already,” she said.

Less than three hours later, the squatters were back on the property. This time the police officer brought backup, but did not find the men.

In the day-and-a-half since then, the squatters have been back multiple times.

“It’s just crazy — they’re stalking my house,” Lisa said.

The odd part, Lisa said, is that nothing has been stolen from or damaged in the house. It is as if the squatters are looking at Lisa’s home as their own.

“I think this man truly believes that he owns this property,” Lisa said.

The man told Lisa to her face that she was trespassing on his property.

“That look in his eyes — you’re like, ‘This guy is completely deranged,'” Lisa said.

Lisa has thankfully been living in an apartment in a different neighborhood while the house is being sold, but she lives in terror now every time she drives back to her own house. She said that with the response she has gotten so far from law enforcement, she honestly does not know what will happen next.

“A single woman trying to sell my largest, greatest asset, and this is what’s going on — after putting literally blood, sweat, and tears into this property,” Lisa said. “I am scared for my physical safety.”

*Lisa’s last name and neighborhood have been left out for personal safety.