LONOKE COUNTY, Ark. — A Lonoke County woman claims she was left homeless after what she calls a disastrous rental experience.
For two months, Sherri Benson says she lived in a converted shed off Chad Chesney Road. It’s one of several small homes all listed at the same address.
The property is owned by Ricky Chesney. Benson says it’s all she could afford, but says she missed a payment and was evicted, with Chesney only giving her a day to move out.
“It’s hard with the holidays, not being able to have a place to call my own,” Benson said. “I have learned my lesson it was definitely too good to be true.”
That’s not the only problem with a renter. According to an affidavit by a Lonoke County Sheriff’s Deputy, Chesney waved a knife at one of his tenants, injuring her. Court records show Chesney took a guilty plea for harassment and got a year of unsupervised probation.
Neighbor Eldon Murdock has owned his home for 30 years and says he’s seen dozens of renters come and go.
Murdock also works for the Tri-Community Fire Department and says they only go on calls to Chesney’s property if law enforcement escorts them.
“We fear for our safety so we have to have an officer with us when we do come,” Murdock said.
Murdock has had his own issues with Chesney. Court records show Murdock got a no contact order against Chesney this year.
“He pointed a pistol out the window at me and told me, ‘Well i’ll just shoot you,'” he explained.
Chesney did not want to do an interview, but over the phone said he gives tenants 10 days notice for an eviction. Chesney added his policy is pay rent or leave.