• Fri, Jun 27 - 9:00 am ET

‘Nightmare Nanny’ Hired Off Craiglist Illustrates Why You Don’t Get Childcare From Craigslist

Craigslist Nanny Refuses To LeaveMarcella Bracamonte, a 31-year-old wife and mother of three who lives in Upland, California, has now learned first hand that the only things you should get off Craigslist are boxes of old rags, because the nanny she hired from there is basically the exact opposite of what you are looking for when wanting decent, quality childcare. The nanny they hired, Diane Stretton age 64, is described as being a fabulous nanny at first, until she suddenly decided to stop minding the children, come out of her bedroom except for meals, and oh yeah, she is threatening to sue her family for wrongful dismissal and abuse of the elderly and incredibly, has told them she wants them out of their own house daily between  eight am and eight pm.

This may be the best nanny story EVER!

From ABCNews:

The first few weeks she was awesome. She would come places with us, help out with the kids, she was really great. Then things changed. All of a sudden she stopped working, she would stay in her room all day and only come out when food was ready. 

The nanny then told the couple she had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and that caring for the kids was too hard for her. So the couple sat right down and wrote her a letter, outlining what her nanny duties are and stating that if she didn’t do these things they would have to fire her. When they presented her with this letter she slammed the door in their faces and told them it wasn’t legal. Bracamonte said when she contacted police they told her it was now a civil matter and they have to legally evict her.

John Moore of the Upland Police Department confirmed to ABC News they cannot do anything at the moment because, ‘generally, once somebody has established residency, you have to go through a formal eviction process.’

According to the report, Marcella says:

‘So this lady is welcome inside my house, anytime she wants,  to eat my food anytime she wants and harass me basically. I’m now a victim in my home and it’s completely legal.’

I love old people. While reading this I was just about ready to welcome Stretton into my home and let her live with me. She may not be helpful with the kids, but I feel terrible thinking about some old lady who can’t nanny anymore and has a chronic health problem and nowhere to go. But then the article states that Stretton has been involved in 36 lawsuits, ensuring she has made California’s Vexatious Litigant list, for abusing the system. Ruh-oh.

The Bracamonte family is continuing to go through the eviction process.

That must be amazingly awkward. You have a stranger living in your home, you ask her to leave, and she says that she will sue you right back for wrongful dismissal and that she also wants the family out of the house during the day.

I want to know if Stretton has a family or someone who can step in and help her leave the house and maybe get her a new place to live and some therapy or something. It’s hard for me to understand why she would stay anywhere she obviously isn’t welcome, and now that this story has made the papers I doubt she can find employment as a nanny again. On one hand, I think she seems pretty whackadoodle but on the other hand, what a drag it is getting old. I would hate to be 64 and in a mess like this. Then again, I would also hate some strange lady living in my house and refusing to leave, so there’s that.

Good childcare is so hard to find these days.

(Image: CBSlocal)

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  • Ursi

    I saw so many people posting about this story yesterday and saying things like, “How hard can it be to kick someone out of YOUR home?” or insinuating they might be spineless or something. Actually, it’s pretty damn hard. Most people have never had to deal with someone this far over the line of acceptable boundaries. I mean, if you ask someone who is already set up in your home to leave and they say, “No.” Your options become extremely limited.

    • Jennie Blair

      My bigger question is how can you let a stranger you met via online posting move into your house?

    • Bleu Cheese Bewbs

      I see SO MANY posts on FB online yard sale groups asking for daycare for their children, roommates, etc. It’s completely crazy to me.

    • wispy

      Yes! The babysitter posts on yard sale pages are nuts! “I need a babysitter tmrw at 4, anyone on here available??” UMMM…..?

    • Bleu Cheese Bewbs

      I was really shocked the first time I saw one and thought it was just a crazy person, but apparently there are TONS of those people out there.

    • wispy

      OMG!! Did she at least meet these people? Was this his mom? I would love to hear that whole story!

    • Bleu Cheese Bewbs

      Oh, god! It was such a horror show. So she tells us all she had a job interview in MD (she lived in IL at the time). We were all excited and then she says it is from Craigslist, at which point we all kind of freaked out. NBD, though, she says because dude totally did a background check on her so he’s not crazy. How did he achieve the background check? She sent him a copy of her ID/license/SS card. I’ll pause to allow you to recover. SHe couldn’t figure out why everyone was freaking out. I explained that a) she didn’t know the guy AT ALL. She said NBD, he gave me his full name. I mentioned that he could lie, you know, and she agreed that it was possible but unlikely because she also had his cell phone number (say what?). SO, basically everyone is convinced that he is a creepy murderer because who the heck hires someone, out of state, off CL to come and care for their aging mother, and also pays for the plane ticket? I mention that she has no car/money if things go south. She says NBD, I am going to live in his house and he has a car I can use. WTF? So I finally tell her that if she at least asked him to go to the police station and get a letter certifying he has no criminal background (I forget what they are called, but I had to get one to get a visa before), that it might make everyone feel more comfy. She agrees its a good idea, and then never does it. Boarded a plane to MD for the interview and accepted the job on the spot. Things went south a couple months later and he basically fired her.

    • wispy

      WHOA!!!! That is crazy! I would have never answered the job ad in the first place, but if I had and had flown there I would have been scared out of my mind! She is braver than I am!

    • Ezzy666

      I called a flyer for I saw looking for baby sitter and was expecting to schedule an interview and said I could show up at 3PM day. Then the mom said they would be back at about 10PM and I was welcome to spend the night if it made getting to class easier the next day. My sister begged me not to go she was convinced it was a fake job. It was a really nice family and I babysat for them for a year and half.

    • JenH1986

      I am a landlord. My tenant unbeknownst to me allowed her boyfriend to live with her, as in turned utilities on in his name, but when I gave the required 24 hours notice to check the property, he wasn’t there. It took me over 2 months to get him evicted when they broke up. It was a damn mess. I evicted her too, but yea…barring physical altercations you don’t have many options.

  • http://misuser.blogspot.com Alex Lee

    Time to do some interior renovations. Reducing a room (specifically HER room) to 10 square feet will kick up a lot of drywall dust.

    I know that’s passive-aggressive, but for this, I feel it is warranted.

    • guest

      I’d probably rip the door down, take some time off work, and stare at her all day. Honestly though, my husband would have probably picked her up, tossed her outside, and changed the locks.

    • http://ichasekids.com/ Litterboxjen

      I think I would install locks on the fridge/cabinets, too.

    • Lackadaisical

      How about locks on the bathrooms and pack the kids off to a relative for a few weeks.

    • guest

      I feel like she would then just shit all over your house.

    • Lackadaisical

      Good and yet horrific point

  • Effervescent Pheasant

    This was the first thing that came to mind when I read that.

  • jane

    This isn’t a craigslist problem, this is a crazy person problem. Did they not check references? Do a background check? Seems like it wouldn’t have been that hard to find out this woman is a kook.

    I found a fantastic babysitter on craigslist – she was -1000% reliable and my kids loved her. But I called 3 references before I hired her, and I didn’t let her move in.

    • Spongeworthy

      Dude, I just said the same thing! Great minds. I wouldn’t hire a dog walker without references.

  • Spongeworthy

    Question for anyone who might know–if this woman has been involved in 36 lawsuits to date, would that have shown up on a google search? Especially if she was on that list?
    I feel bad for these people to a point, but who gets a nanny off Craigslist? Did they do a background check, ask for references, anything before allowing this woman to live in their home?

    • JenH1986

      Unless the case was precedent setting…no probably not. Court records are public record though and most states have a free option to search. But if she moved from state to state…lots of stuff at play. I know here that an eviction that’s uncontested can take up to 60 days in some cases so…they have a long time to wait this out.

    • Spongeworthy

      Ok, thanks. That’s what I was wondering, since court record are public do they pop up on google or do you have to search in the court system. Probably the same with that Vexatious Litigant list.
      In the last apt building we lived in before we bought out house, our landlord had to evict a tenant for violating the no pets policy and for not paying rent. We were talking to him about it and he said it was such a hassle. I think it’s good to have the laws in place so people can’t just be thrown on the street, but it would be hard for me to stomach having to keep someone in my place after they weren’t paying rent.

    • JenH1986

      It’s tricky because I see both sides. I know where I live I have to give a 10 day notice. In the state next to me (where I work). I have to give a 3 days notice. But if they don’t move out I have to go to court, file an eviction, that is then set for a court date, usually 30 days+ away. So usually best case is that a tenant can be in the home for roughly 45 days before they are “evicted”. But even then if they choose not to leave I have to get the sheriff to come set their stuff out. Which depending on how busy the sheriff is in that county can take a day or up to a week. Then I STILL have to go back to court to get judgment on my money! it’s not an easy process. Given that she has been given a Vexatious Litigator title I’d guess that she filed in the same courts. But most people don’t know you can just hop online and search a name for free for court systems or just call the clerks office. So a google search is probably all they would do.

    • Spongeworthy

      What a headache! This is what l have to remember the next time my husband and I watch Income Property and say “hmmm, maybe…”

    • JenH1986

      DON’T DO IT! Seriously unless you or your husband are particularly handy and can fix things on your own, it’s expensive. There are property management companies who can handle this for you but ultimately it’s your money and headache. I hate it. I would never recommend it to anyone.

    • UterineDudebroWhoLikesOlives

      JenH answered the question about the Google search, and she’s right, so I won’t reiterate what she said.

      As this woman’s employers though, I believe they would be within their rights to do a formal background check on her, as long as she a) Knew about it ahead of time and b) Consented to it in writing. My company contracts with a vendor for this, but most background verification companies offer options for individuals. Every state has different regulations though on what can be run, what can be adjudicated, etc, so they’d have to make sure they were operating within their state’s laws.

    • Spongeworthy

      Good point about written consent for the check. It just blows my mind that they would A) hire a person as a nanny and B) invite her to live in their home without doing a background check of some kind. And if she refused to consent, wouldn’t that tell you something?
      I used to work in HR and did background checks. There was a spot on the form to consent. We also had it written that a criminal conviction may not disqualify you from the position, but that if you did not disclose on your application that you had a record and the background check turned it up, that would disqualify you.

    • UterineDudebroWhoLikesOlives

      We used to have that same disclosure, but with so many states revising their laws about background checks, we took it out.

      I work in an HR capacity too. God, I freaking hate background checks. Seriously.

  • wispy

    How can this cuckoo clock tell them she wants them out of their own house for 12 hours a day? Something tells me this lady had this planned for a long time. You don’t suddenly get COPD and stop being able to work, it’s not like the flu where it just pops up overnight and whoops! Can’t go to work today! She would have known this before she was hired. Also she’s 64, not 104. Lady get your stuff and get the hell out.

    • http://misuser.blogspot.com Alex Lee

      methlab. Frame her for it.

      “Yes officer. She explicitly stated she wanted me and my wife out of the house every day for 12 hours. I assume that is when she started cooking. Her respiratory illness is most-likely from the chemical fumes.”

    • wispy

      GENIUS!

    • Mystik Spiral

      No kidding. My mom’s almost 70 and she works outs, mows her own lawn, does the gardening, home repairs, travels to Europe, and a whole shit ton of other stuff. 64 is not old.

    • wispy

      Um yeah. My dad’s about to hit 60. I guess I should break the news to him… it’s time to start squatting!

  • Jessifer

    People like this woman know how the system works and they are aware of all the loopholes. They make a living off exploiting them. It’s obvious that she knew exactly what she was going to do from day one. I highly doubt she had any intention whatsoever to work as a nanny – the whole plan from the beginning was to move in and make it impossible for them to throw her out. The couple will win eventually, but by then months will have gone by with this woman squatting in their house rent-free.

  • Rosa

    They shouldn’t of let her move in. That was the biggest mistake.

  • KaeTay

    I’d get a separate fridge to keep the real food in and lock it.. and give her access to a fridge that has stuff that allows her to survive off of.. (aka keep expensive shit in the locked one)

    This reminds me of that lifetime movie where a person moved into a part of their home and pays rent and when he tries to kick him out, finds out that he can’t. The guy stays locked up in the room through the eviction process and just DESTROYS the place in the process!

    I don’t see how you can’t just fire a nanny and they have to get out. They could at least give the nanny say.. a 25 day period to find a new place for legal matter but no eviction process.. they are your employee not your roommate. I’m sure she wasn’t paying a dime of rent.

    the movie I remember watching:

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0100318/

    • JenH1986

      Or just lock your own fridge…

    • KaeTay

      they might be able to consider that abuse and the woman could use it in the courtroom

    • JenH1986

      It is not abuse to not feed someone who isn’t your dependent.

    • CMJ

      You are not required to feed tenants.

    • Momma425

      Or squatters.
      I am under the impression that you could hypothetically cut off the heat, electricity, water…all of the above. She’s not a tenant, she is squatting (I’m assuming).

    • JenH1986

      I think that could be arguable and perhaps difficult if they are also living there and it’s not separate connections. So for simplicities sake I’d avoid cutting off utilities (unless they were separate) and just stop feeding her.

    • brebay

      No, you can’t shut off utilities, but you certainly don’t have to feed her.

    • Lackadaisical

      Why provide her with enough to survive? After giving notice of losing her job is it really the families responsibility to continue to feed her indefinitely? I think the lock on the fridge and cupboards is a very good idea.

    • keelhaulrose

      I could be wrong, but they’re under no legal obligation to feed her, are they?
      Legally they can’t kick her out until the eviction process is over, but that doesn’t mean they have to provide comforts or food.

    • wispy

      I was thinking this would make an EXCELLENT Lifetime movie.

  • keetakat

    Professional. Grifter.

  • Lackadaisical

    I assume that she never leaves the house, thus preventing them from changing the locks and leaving her things outside. In which case although it would be a major pain and expense I would contemplate removing all food from the house and only eat out of the house for a while and see what she does then as they are not obligated to feed her any more, surely. Yes, I know I sound a mean and heartless cow, but she moved in to be a nanny and refuses to be a nanny and won’t leave after she is fired. Even if she was ill and unable to chase after the kids that doesn’t mean she has to spend her time locked away in her room away from the kids entirely rather than being around for basic babysitting at the least. If she is so ill that she can’t do her duties then why has she not called a doctor in or been out to the hospital in all that time. If she was trying to claim she was too ill to do her job then she ought to have obtained a note from the doctors to give to her employer. Also my mother is 64, that isn’t doddering and frail old lady old, that is not old enough to warrant free home and food from random strangers because we should all sympathise with the old dear age. Unless this is another story where we only get one side initially and it all turns out to be lies then it sounds to me like the nanny is more of a con artist or needs psychiatric help. It is possible that the truth could be something other than what the original source reported or the family are telling us.

    Also, this is more about not checking references from the sounds of it than craiglist. The lady could have advertised anywhere and done the same thing.

    • Momma425

      This is exactly what I was thinking. I would remove all food from the house, and my family would be eating out (or we would buy food from the store, day by day, and only buy enough for our family to eat that particular meal).
      My mom is almost in her 60′s and she still works full time! 64 isn’t even retirement age. This is not some frail old lady who suddenly got sick and has nowhere else to go- this is someone who knows the system and manipulates it. She has done this (or something similar) to 34 other families! Additionally, COPD is not something she just woke up with- she knew she had this before she moved in. I doubt that this woman had any intention of ever being a nanny. She knew the system and maniuplated this family, and now they are stuck with her. I feel absolutely no sympathy for this old lady con artist at all.

    • Lackadaisical

      Yes, if the story is as the family claim there are no excuses. Mind you, there have been so many stories lately where the victim went to the press and was later shown to be a liar so I feel a bit wary. Were I swanky enough for a live in nanny and they told me they were too ill to work my first instinct would be to take them to the doctor or hospital for a check up, not draw up a list of her duties on the spot.

    • Momma425

      I agree- this whole thing is absolutely weird (I don’t understand why this family is forced to feed her or feels the need to do that, or adhere to her demands to leave the house for 12 hours per day), so it very well could be that this is a hoax, or there is more to the story. But this woman is involved in 34 other lawsuits? Sounds like a professional scammer.

    • brebay

      Yeah, but this lady has filed 36 lawsuits and is actually on a list where she now needs judicial approval to file any more suits. Basically a chronic abuser of the system.

    • guest

      Agree, too many stories lately where initially only one side is talking, or there’s just not enough investigation done yet (hot car) for me to automatically side with the family. Although it does sound pretty bad that she is on that list, so I am sort of leaning towards the family already. Even though they kind of annoy me, I wouldn’t be feeding her or making her in the least bit comfortable (if what they’re saying is true), there’s just no way you can convince me they HAVE to feed her.

    • Jean

      Having a live-in nanny doesn’t necessarily equate swanky. Not trying to argue your point in general, but I have a (none-live-in) nanny because none of the home daycares or centers are open late enough to accommodate my or my husband’s work schedules – apparently everyone around here with kids gets off work at 4:30. A nanny is actually our only option. If you have an extra room in your house, and three kids, a live-in nanny can actually be cheaper than paying for a center or daycare. Daycare centers around here run $250/week per kid, and you can get a live-in nanny for $350/week to watch all three kids. That’s over $3000 a month vs about $1500.

    • Lackadaisical

      Sorry, I hadn’t meant to be insulting. It is the live-in rather than nanny that I equate with out of my families price bracket, and personally if I could be swanky then I happily would. Different childcare options work in different areas and with different family sizes. Where I live child minders are the cheaper option, and have the advantage of all being regulated and inspected by OFSTED, but the charge per child per hour rather than just per hour. A few miles away in a town in the same county a friend of mine finds the going rate is nearly double that of where I live and with no sibling discounts. With 3 children childminders are so expensive that she is pretty much paying them what she earns so that she can keep her career going for when they are all at school and the hours of childcare she needs to pay for go down. Perhaps a nanny would work out cheeper there. Where I live a nanny is the more expensive option for one kid but improves comparatively for larger families. However not all nannies are registered with OFSTED and if they aren’t then you can’t use the 15 hours a week childcare for 3 & 4 year olds that the government pays for (every parent on the country gets it). Yes, the hours that you can get a nanny to cover are often better.

    • Jean

      No worries, I wasn’t insulted. The US has a far different deal when it comes to childcare. There aren’t cost subsidies unless you make a low income, and very little regulation when it comes to cost. In fact, I’ve known a couple people who make a low income that were able to send their children to the top-end centers for practically free and other people earning modest incomes that were struggling to break even after childcare, it’s a ridiculous system. Most people do in-home daycare or childcare centers. I live in a large metropolitan area in the midwest, and I know families that pay more in childcare than they do for their mortgage. I have had people comment on the “fanciness” of my employing a nanny. It’s certainly not because we are rich, it’s simply because we have no other option. I pay $200/week for a nanny that watches our child approximately 20 hours a week (my husband doesn’t go to work until early afternoon). If I was paying for full-time home daycare it would cost pretty much the same. However, I have to have a degree of flexibility when it comes to staying late at work occasionally and some nights I don’t get home until seven. If I could find a center or home daycare willing to work with this, I would, but I’d be paying the same and then wouldn’t have the luxury of coming straight home from work! In the end I have enjoyed the arrangement because my child gets much more attention then he would in a group setting, but as he gets older I hope I can find a daycare that will work with us, because I’d like it if he could socialize a bit more.

    • Lackadaisical

      I think the other factor in my perception of a live-in nanny as rather expensive and posh (although I don’t perceive other nannies the same way) is that in the UK housing is far more expensive than the US. When friends in America tell me of houses they have seen with land and more rooms than mine at half the price I am always stunned. In the UK having a house with a a reasonably sized spare bedrooms as well as kids taking up bedrroms and enough space in the rest of the house for a nanny to maintain autonomy and dignity when off the clock is well beyond most family’s budget.

    • Jean

      I suppose in some areas in the US that would be true, like LA and New York. Where I live many homes are quite large and people generally buy a home with the intention of having a spare bedroom or two. My starter home had four bedrooms and was still quite a modest home in terms of space and price, but we easily could have fit a live-in nanny with her own bedroom and bathroom, if needed. Its a luxury I’m sure many Americans take for granted.

    • Lackadaisical

      My starter home was considered large as it had three bedrooms and one was a box room that only just fit a single bed, my current home is not much better and my husband earns a decent wage. These days it is really hard to get on the property ladder in the UK as the cheapest houses in York, which is in the North of England so much cheaper, start at around $200,000 and are one bedroom. The very cheapest of the flats start at around $150,000 for a glorified bedsit (one bedroom … that is also all other rooms except a bathroom and kitchenette if you are lucky). As you say, there are plenty of places in America where housing is equally expensive. The problem is that the UK is rather densely populated so land is pricey and all our houses are brick so more expensive to put up.

      The only people I know with spare bedrooms are retired, so the rooms would have been filled before the kids all left home, or child free so no kids to cram into the other bedrooms.

    • Amanda Price

      I read in a different article that the arrangement was for her to have room and board in exchange for nanny duties, so I don’t necessarily think the family was swanky.

    • Erin Murphy

      You’re in my brain! I can think of 100 ways to make my home so uncomfortable that she would be rushing to leave. I also agree that COPD isn’t something you just wake up with.

    • SunnyD847

      How do they/we even know that she really has COPD? She sounds like a lying McLiarpants.

    • Smishsmash

      I’m not a lawyer, but from what I understand, once you are in a position where the person has enough rights to the space that eviction proceedings are required, you can’t just make things miserable for them as a way to force them to leave without yourself breaking the law. Sucks, but that’s the breaks. They need to play by the rules or things will go even worse for them.

    • Lawrence

      She definitely would have no right to food, unless that were agreed on in the contract. Honestly, given her track record, I might just take my chances on throwing her out without evicting her. If she has truly filed 36 lawsuits, she might find herself with an unsympathetic judge.

  • Fallopian Twerker Phillips

    I’m torn between, “That’s horrible!” and “Maybe I should tell my mom about this, as she’s looking for a job and a place to live right now.” Heh.
    About 6 or 7 years ago, I was looking to make some extra money babysitting–I was coaching gymnastics at the time as well–and I put up an ad on Craigslist advertising my babysitting services. Within a few hours, I got a call from a family who lived in Greenwich, which is a wealthy town, asking me if I could come over the next day and babysit their 3 year old twin boys for the afternoon. I was like, Sure, do you want me to stop by today and just meet you guys first? No, you sound fine, they said. Ok. So the next day I go over there around noon, and the parents basically talk to me for 30 seconds and run out the door. The boys were very sweet, but I was with them for like 7 hours, including lunch and dinner (which I was given no directions about) and the parents came home WASTED. Long story short, I was so stunned by that that I never babysit off of craigslist again. I wasn’t a parent yet, but I just remember thinking, God, you people are lucky that I’m ME and not some perv/asshole/drugdealer. Although, I’m thinking they might have thought it was a bonus if I’d had some coke on me…..
    I will only leave Face with family or one of the girls who used to coach for me. I’m lucky to have a lot of options for sitters (paid and free.) I feel bad for parents who don’t have that as a resource and have to put their faith in strangers when it comes to babysitting.

    • truthbetold

      To be honest, those parents really shouldn’t have even trusted you. You are a stranger babysitting their twin boys! I don’t know why people trust strangers to look after their children.

    • Fallopian Twerker Phillips

      I completely agree! Like I said, lucky for them I’m me. It’s only because *I* knew that I was trustworthy that I went ahead and watched their children on such short notice. Like, if I had turned the job down, who knows who they could have allowed to watch their kids?

    • keelhaulrose

      I’m assuming she stayed and worked until she hit “squatters rights” type territory where she established that as her residence.

    • SunnyD847

      I remember asking a potential sitter “Do you have a driver’s license?” She says yes. I keep looking at her, then she says ” Oh, you mean you want to SEE it?” Uh, yeah, and photocopy it.

  • keetakat

    At what point does her behavior become threatening to this family? When can they tell the authorities that her bizarre behavior makes them feel endangered? She is, essentially, a stranger. They have only known her for a limited time (not unlike dating) yet they trusted her — however naively — to be a good and decent person. At this point, though, this person has become menacing in her actions and threats and this family is now in fear for their lives from this clearly disturbed woman.

    • JenH1986

      I know that here I can threaten to kill my husband but if I haven’t put my hands on him, the most they can say is for me to stay somewhere else and for him to call fi I’ve done something. If they have similar laws (which are meant to protect people from vindictive asshats) then unless she actually does something, probably nothing they can do except through civil courts. I’d tell her “sue me then, but get the hell out of my house”

    • keetakat

      I was thinking that it seems like a form of “stalking” but on a much creepier level. Given how dismissive and nonchalant the authorities are when it comes to stalking, I’m not too surprised that they’re just letting this ride. I’m with you. Sue me if you must, but get the hell out of my house.

    • JenH1986

      They can disprove her claims later. But yeesh. She doesn’t have anything but they could sue her for their court costs etc. because she’s clear nuts. I’d actually prefer the could have her arrested because then she could be evaluated to see if there is something going on or if she’s just a manipulative bitch.

    • keetakat

      Exactly. If she’s a manipulative bitch, perhaps her attorney’s can call her bluff by requesting court ordered evaluation (I have no idea if that’s feasible) and she will either drop it and move on or she may get help that she needs if she really is suffering.

    • JenH1986

      They can request that she provide documentation of her medical issue that prevented her from working. I don’t think they could do a mental eval in a civil case unless she agrees.

    • keetakat

      Right on. I hope they get rid of her before she goes all Pacific Heights.

  • truthbetold

    She’s creepy. Why would you hire a stranger off Craigslist to nanny your children?

    • brebay

      it’s the only way they could get one they didn’t have to pay. It’s usually room & board plus a modest salary. They got what they paid for. That being said, they should be as awful as is legally allowed to her to get her out. She’s horrid, and they learned their lesson.

  • Ashie

    Oh man I totally would make sure there was not a speck of food in the
    house. She wants to play games? Game on grandma! I would honestly make
    her life a living hell and see how long she would stay which probably
    would not be long. I would take the door off the room, I would keep my
    kids up all hours of the night right near her room. Does she shower? I
    would make sure the water would always be ice cold for her. Sounds all
    mean and nasty but look at what she’s doing to this family. She’s also
    demanding for them to be out of the house certain hours of the day? You
    better believe I would make sure she was never in the house alone. Ugh reading this article makes me hate people.

    • http://misuser.blogspot.com Alex Lee

      FREE DRUM LESSONS! 24/7! Apply within.

      Also, start collecting brown recluse spiders as pets. Damn…one got away…

      more passive-aggressive because I hate people.

    • Lackadaisical

      Oh yes, if we all needed to be out of the house I would ask a friend or relative to be in the house while we were out because my trust would be so very low. I would also be getting locks for all doors.

    • WriterLady

      I think the one factor that baffles me more than anything else is that the woman specified that she is to be left alone for 12 hours during the day. I mean, what in the living hell?! Let’s say she is a legitimate tenant who rents a room. Even under those circumstances (where there is a binding contract/lease stating that the person is a legal tenant of the home), that person still does not have the right to dictate when the primary owners of the home can come and go. They aren’t landlords; it’s their OWN home. I’m wondering if, during this intermittent period in which the system is trying to figure out what to do, the judge or DA is enforcing that part of the “nanny’s clause.” Because I would go back into my own home…no questions asked. You can send me to jail, if you want, but I sure as hell am not leaving a sociopathic con artist alone in my own home for even 15 minutes.

  • gammachris

    So basically, you feel sorry for her because she’s old? I’m sorry- being old and even poor is no excuse for what she’s doing. None whatsoever.

    • brebay

      Yeah, I guess they missed the part where she’s filed 36 lawsuits…an old grifter is still just a grifter…

  • Kelly

    And this is why people like her get away with using and abusing others their entire lives. You read about what an obvious shit stain of a human being she is and you still want to “help” her.

    You realize she wouldn’t appreciate it, don’t you? She’d just laugh about what a stupid, bitch mark you were as she filed a lawsuit against you.

  • TngldBlue

    This reminds me of those stories Inside Edition always does about people that leave their homes for long time for whatever reason-long vacations, caring for family members, etc-and come back home to find squatters have broken in & are living there and the homeowners have no recourse but to go through the courts to get them out. One recent one, the squatter actually managed to get his name on the deed. It is just mind boggling.

  • OligarChic

    Something similar recently happened to my mom. Mom was recently divorced, living on her own for the first time is 35 years. Her coworker was having difficulty in her living situation and Mom invited coworker to stay at her house to get out of the bad situation. Coworker was initially grateful and moved into Mom’s spare room with the understanding it was a temporary solution. A month later there was no indication Coworker planned to move out.Then Coworkers daughter and granddaughter moved in. Shenanigans ensued and Mom had to go through the eviction process.

  • Elisa

    64 isn’t old enough to use the “little old lady” card. And this lady is taking advantage of everything she can. Blah.

    I rented from a lovely lady who had another tenant not pay rent for over a year, and when she tried to evict him, he counter sued her. She ended up having to pay him $5000 to get rid of him even though he owed HER that much in back rent. I get protecting out of work people from being randomly kicked out, but blatently abusing that system, I just don’t understand.

    • Rachel Sea

      I know someone who, as a matter of routine, stops paying rent when she knows she’s going to move in order to save up money for the new place. And she wonders why people don’t bend over backwards to help her out when she has problems.

    • Elisa

      And here I get stressed out if we have to split the rent payment. (which my landlady suggested LOL)

      I don’t understand people who just decide not to pay their rent. A friend of mine did that, too, they were trying to save up a down payment on a house, but since they hadn’t been paying rent they couldn’t get a loan and ended up finding a different place to rent.

      I’d rather save $50 a paycheck, takes longer but at least I know I have a place to live without lawsuits!

  • VenusDoom3

    A stay-at-home mom needs a nanny?

    • Kelly

      Oh yay, the mommy shaming has begun!

    • VenusDoom3

      Yes, I’m all about the mommy shaming. /sarcasm Now let’s get back to reality, shall we?
      I’m just curious in what circumstances a stay at home mom, whose literal job is to stay at home and care for her children, needs someone not only to help her care for those kids full time, but move into her house to help her do it.
      Especially someone they found on Craigslist, and on whom they apparently did no background check whatsoever. For all they knew, she could have been a pedophile or a child murderer. Seems more than a tad reckless, don’t you think?
      If one or more of the kids have special needs, I could totally understand her needing some help. None of the articles mention such a thing, though. If that was the case, I don’t care how much help you need — you do a background check. Jesus H. Christ.
      Oh yay, the logical-minded mommy shaming can continue now! (Yes, that would be me.)

    • JenH1986

      I read on another article that the mom did this in summer so that her kids could partake in different activities basically someone else to help monitor the kids.

    • guest

      Also, if you got money to pay for a nanny whilst staying at home then my hat is off to you madame. No shaming here.

    • Kelly

      There’s nothing logical about suggesting that there’s no “legitimate” reason for a SAHM to have a nanny. That’s just obvious mommy shaming.

      There are lots of reasons why this mom may have needed help and the reality is, she doesn’t need to give you or anyone else a reason. The act of hiring a nanny does not make her a bad mother or require explanation. The way she went about it was definitely stupid just like “A stay at home mom needs a nanny?” was definitely a bitchy, judgmental, ignorant comment.

    • VenusDoom3

      Cool. :) Good thing we’re all entitled to our opinions!

  • AP

    I was reading comments on another article about this, and a few people pointed out that a simple employment contract would have helped support the parents by making the housing a part of her compensation package that ends at a certain period of time after her compensation.

    As a side note, a lot of people think contracts have to be fancy, but they don’t. They can just say, “We agree to pay Jane $50 for cleaning our garage on Saturday, July 5,” or whatever. Obviously, a simple contract like that won’t be ironclad, but if the person turns out to be a jerk, you have SOMETHING.

  • Guest

    This situation could easily be solved with a boat, a rock, and some rope. Who would miss the old bag anyway?

  • B.

    “I love old people. While reading this I was just about ready to welcome Stretton into my home and let her live with me.”

    Madame, you are a giant simp.

    • brebay

      God, I hate old people. They’re just like middle-aged people but meaner, slower, and less hygenic…

    • guest

      I really have no words for this…….And I’m sure you’ll have some snarky reply, if you reply at all, but seriously?

    • brebay

      Are you really so bored you have to troll a snark site hunting for snark? No, daffy, not seriously.

  • Rachel Sea

    I’d send the kids to stay elsewhere and then it would be game on. Speakers pointed at her walls alternately blaring Slayer and mariachi music all night, no food, no hot water, no laundry, electricity cut at random intervals, as many friends over all day and all night as possible, and full on gaslighting when she mentioned any of it.

    • Coco

      I love that I’m not the only vengeful thinking one out there….

    • Rachel Sea

      I don’t even think it’s vengeful, I think it’s using every possible resource under the law to make her step outside of her own volition. I think Nellie the Elephant on repeat at high volume for a few days would probably send her screaming.

    • brebay

      Is there a college nearby with a fraternity that might be looking for a social gathering place? Sure, kids, the bedrooms aren’t off-limits, you see a mattress, get busy!

    • Rachel Sea

      Don’t worry if there is some lady already there, she loves kids!

    • SunnyD847

      We used to dance around the house to that song with the kids when they were little. :) Love it!

    • Rachel Sea

      I had this album in the ’80s, but the original sleeve was gone. I was probably 20 years old before I discovered that their frontwoman was a bloke.

    • Jezebeelzebub

      that’s where my brain went, too. Immediately I began scheming, and I am GREAT at that. Now I kind of want to hire someone off Craigslist….

    • gothicgaelicgirl

      I kept envisioning hiding boiled eggs in her room, bet she wouldn’t stay if there was a bad mystery smell!

    • Rowan

      Raw prawns in the curtain hems.

    • gothicgaelicgirl

      O I LOVE that idea!

  • brebay

    Why are they feeding her? If this is an eviction issue, fine. But your landlord doesn’t have to feed you, or provide your toilet paper, or soap, or shampoo…

  • Hyperbolme

    I admire the writer’s compassion because in my opinion, this woman doesn’t warrant any. She seems dishonest and parasitic. I would rather be a bag lady on a bench somewhere than burden a young family like she is doing.

    • Hyperbolme

      Aww, just noticed the writer is Eve. Of course! You’re a good person, Eve! Better than me.

    • guest

      Yes, that is very compassionate. I don’t think a lot of people understand why Eve would feel that way, but I get it. Unfortunately that means I also get taken advantage of, but at least now instead of giving money to the beggars I see every time I go to the store, I’ll buy food when I go in and give that to them. I can never be sure if they’re scammers or not so I have a hard time saying no. The ones that hit me up at stoplights get nothing anymore now, even though it’s very hard for me to stop myself.

  • Miss Ladyface

    My mother had a “handyman”( I use that term loosely because he was a shit handy man and an excellent conman) do this same thing to her. The police didn’t do anything. We even caught him loading our personal belongings into his vehicle and the police couldn’t legally do anything. There was no contract between my mother and him, no living arrangements set up, her mistake was letting him sleep in our travel trailer for a few nights, therefore, he was “living there”. He knew how to manipulate the system and knew we couldn’t do squat. A few weeks later, we were in town consulting with our layer and when we returned we found our house basically empty and our garage on fire. We lost everything. We called the police and told them that it was arson and we were robbed by the squatter, and they took a report and that was the end of that. No justice was brought upon him. He snaked away, hid for a while, and I found out like 3 years later he had did it to another woman. These people know what there doing, and have no problems lying to your face and conning you. This family in the article had better put up security cameras, and lock up anything that they don’t want to disappear. My heart breaks for them.

    • guest

      People like that need to be put down.

    • Alanna Jorgensen

      I had no idea that staying in a travel trailor for a few nights could legally count as establishing residency. I mean, if I have a friend crash at my place after too many drinks could they legally refuse to leave? What are the guidelines? This is terrifying to me how easy it is to take over someone’s HOME.

    • Miss Ladyface

      The trailer did not have a working shower, so my mother let him into the house to shower, therefore he was allowed access to the house and we could not kick him out. We live in California and its mind boggling how many “rights” squatters have. Horrible.

  • tk88

    Am I the only one who thinks 64 is hardly “elderly”? She may be ill but she’s not that old by today’s standards. I still don’t know why anyone would hire anyone for anything off Craigslist.

    • CMP414

      64 IMO is not elderly at all at least not these days. My dad just turned 64 and still works part time and maintains his property. He travels and goes out like anyone else. This whole situation is some insane bullshit.

    • gothicgaelicgirl

      I agree.
      My dad is 72, and a musician.
      He still does three and four month tours every year, all over the world, comes home to a house in Wicklow, does all the upkeep of the house, runs after my 10 year old sister and STILL has time to go mountain climbing.

      So yeah…Age doesn’t mean you’re incapable of anything, including work!

    • Rowan

      My mum turned 70 a month ago, and just got back from her 3rd (I think, could be the 4th) walking & music tour in Europe.

  • Jezebeelzebub

    Jeez, just because someone is old (or “old) doesn’t make him/her a good person. Old people are people- they aren’t cute or adorable just because their faces have softened with age. They are still who they always were- for good or ill. With the exception, of course, of those who have suffered some sort of brain trauma which can and occasionally does cause personality changes. Being old doesn’t wipe the slate or make someone harmless. It just makes them old.

    • brebay

      If anything, the mean ones get meaner with age!

  • CMP414

    This story kinda scared the crap out of me. My aunt is elderly and met an electrician 10 months ago who came to work on her home. Long story short, my recently widowed aunt “befriended” him and his family (wife plus 4 kids and 2 dogs) and now they are in her home after “selling” theirs. She isn’t answering my letters and my FB stalking shows things are not going too well. I’m guessing now that these people are in her home getting them out will be a huge thing. I feel powerless because I live about 1,000 miles away and she has no family in the state.

    • scotty5000

      call a state elder service agency

    • CMP414

      I really need to because she is saying she is putting these people in her will, etc. They are now her new family according to her. to me they are con artists

  • brebay

    She doesn’t need a therapist, she needs a probation officer!

  • koolchicken

    I’m sorry but I never once felt sorry for this woman. No one is suddenly diagnosed with COPD, she knew she was ill. That is assuming she is actually ill. This woman is not some poor elderly lady who’s down on her luck. She’s a con-artist who’s looking for a new mark. Well, she has one now.

    As for her family. She’s been involved in 60 lawsuits. That’s almost one for every year she’s been alive. So even if she hasn’t sued all of her relatives I’m sure they’re smart enough to want to stay away from her. Some people are just rotten, she is one of those people.

  • CateyK

    She sounds like a total piece of work, but the family who hired her we’re trying to get something on the cheap, and what they were doing is illegal. You have to pay workers minimum wage for every hour they work, even if they live with you. You also have to contribute your share of SS taxes. As to locking her out, not providing food, loud noises, flaming dog poop…that might sound good but it’s a non-starter. They established the terms of her tenancy when she moved in…room and board. If they change the terms, she can sue them for it. These people were idiots. They didn’t want to go through a reputable agency and pay a fair wage to a nanny and they are learning a very hard lesson.

    • Mr. Copland

      Er… not true. It’s called salary.

    • CateyK

      Salary = $$. Benefits = room and board. They are different parts of compensation. Check federal minimum wage law.

    • Mr. Copland

      No, you said that you have to pay minimum wage for every hour worked. That’s not true. It’s called salary. Look at the way personal assistants work for celebrities.

    • brebay

      Her point is that this woman wasn’t paid a wage OR salary. Room and board are neither of these. It’s VERY unusual for a live-in nanny not to get any wages or salary.

  • WriterLady

    I read somewhere that under California state law, if a person stays with you for more than 3 days (even if it is an informal situation, with no lease agreement present or anything), then the person–ahem, squatter–can actually sue to remain in the household if asked to leave by the owners of the home. If that’s the case, what a terrifying scenario for people. Furthermore, I would imagine that the “nanny” probably strengthened her argument by saying that she was hired as a live-in nanny and was fired upon becoming ill, thus trying to conjure up sympathy and present a wrongful termination suit or something. If she has had three dozen encounters with the legal system, you can bet she is a serial squatter.

    • Alanna Jorgensen

      On the plus side, this law could always be an “out” for allowing obnoxious family members to stay longer than a weekend. “I’d love to let you stay the whole week, but then I wouldn’t be able to kick you out after, so no.”

    • WriterLady

      True!

  • The Redhead

    This family actually lives a few doors down from my boyfriend. There were news vans up and down the street all night. Apparently the nanny wasn’t in the house, they waiting for her to return home so they could get an interview.

    • brebay

      They should just lock down while she’s gone. No way the police are going to shoot their way in over something like this, the worse they would do is issue a summons, and no jury in the land would convict…would get the whole mess before a judge a lot sooner.

  • Wannabevenus

    Sounds like the family needs to stay somewhere and befriend a very active, loud, biker gang who’ll hang out in their house for awhile..at an agreed on time interval, of course.

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  • M.

    Treat her like a petulant teenager. You can’t kick her out, but it might be time to take the door off the hinges, throw all of her stuff out on the lawn, and lock all of the cabinets. Wait until she hits someone, then have her arrested for battery.