Family finds evidence of squatters in their home - News, Weather and Classifieds for Southern New England

Family finds evidence of squatters in their home

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BARRINGTON, R.I. -

The Woodard family of Barrington came home from a week-long vacation to find other people had been in their home much of the time they were gone -- and they left quite a mess.

"The first thing I noticed was the stench. The house just stunk," Tracy Woodard said Wednesday night. "It smelled like a combination of mildew and bad food. Just flies everywhere. It was so disgusting."

She said there was food all over the place, wet towels and blankets left around, all kinds of stuff in the pool, including a knife, and broken doors. She said cash was gone and that bedroom drawers had been gone through. Someone else's underwear was left on the couch, and condom wrappers and marijuana were left behind. Alcohol was missing. The squatters even made cookies. They taped blankets over the glass doors so neighbors couldn't see in.

"I haven't slept in three days," Woodard said. "It's so disrespectful and it's so violating. You don't realize how much you feel violated until you start walking through your house and you don't know what's been touched and what's been used. Has my bed been slept in? Has my toothbrush been used? It's just a horrible, horrible feeling."

Woodard said she thinks teenagers are to blame and that they heard from her son that the family would be away.

"In my opinion, this should be pursued. Kids should not get away with this kind of stuff," Woodward said.

Barrington Police Chief John LaCross said it isn't certain if teenagers are the culprits. He said if they do find the trouble makers, they'd be charged with breaking and entering.

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