Family kept out of home after wife imprisoned for husband's death

CUYAHOGA COUNTY, OH (WOIO) - It's a double burden for a family dealing with a woman sent to prison for the death of her husband -- not only is there an emotional toll, but they have been kept out of the home.

It's a foreclosed home in Euclid, one of hundreds in Cuyahoga County. But this one has a story to tell about how a family's memories may end up in a dumpster.

Bob Brihacek grew up in the home. The back yard was the family's baseball diamond.

Later, his brother Richard and family lived there.

Bob was there when his brother's wife, Debora, was sent to prison for seven years. She was convicted of not providing care for Richard, who was bed-ridden -- and at 5 feet 7 inches tall, only 93 pounds -- when he died.

Deborah is the executor of Richard's will, but being in prison, she can't take any actions, so the home is in foreclosure and padlocked. Inside, there are decades of memories.

It appears someone is misleading Bob.

According to the Chief Magistrate overseeing the handling of foreclosure cases:

  • In foreclosure, the family, not the bank still owns the property.
  • The bank can padlock the property to protect its investment.
  • However, the family has the right to be allowed in to retrieve memorabilia, but not remove valuables to sell.

Chief Magistrate Steve Bucha said situations like Bob's happen a lot.  With that advice, Bob is moving forward with his goal -- to get those memorable pieces out before they end up in a dumpster when the house is sold at a sheriff's sale.

Bucha said Bob should have an answer soon.

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