Oakland Squatters Defy Judge's Order To Leave Home, Claim Right To Shelter

Two women who have been living illegally in a West Oakland home are refusing to leave despite a court order last week that they have no valid claim on the property, and they claim to have nowhere else to go right now.

The new owner of the home on Magnolia Street is Wedgewood Properties. The real estate investment firm has made an offer to pay a Catholic Charities of the East Bay to provide shelter for the women and their children, but 34-year-old Dominique Walker and 41-year-old Sameerah Karim say that's insult. They've been living there since last November.

Both women are reportedly members of a group called Moms 4 Housing, and not long after the court ordered eviction that organization issued a defiant tweet which read in part, "The moms, and the community behind us, will not leave the property."

The squatters have just five days to comply with the judge's ruling and leave the home or face forcible eviction by the Alameda County Sheriff's Office. Wedgewood Properties has urged the women to leave peacefully for the deadline, and sheriff's officials are hoping community leaders will be able to convince them to do, but it appears that's unlikely to happen.

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