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Officials rethink court security after threat

SHARE Officials rethink court security after threat

Franklin County leaders are meeting to discuss courthouse security because of a letter from a constitutionalist who claims allodial title to his home.

In a Sept. 17 public auction, Patric Powell's home in Preston was sold for $2,600, covering the $1,200 in unpaid back taxes. On Oct. 2 the county received a letter from Powell demanding $10,000 in "lawful money" to compensate him for damages and violations of his rights."Otherwise, I will remain an immutable transient on the streets of Franklin County until my objective has been completed," he wrote.

Constitutionalists, so-called because of their strict adherence to the original document, say gold and silver are the only lawful monies.

Powell said the county failed to notify him or afford him a meeting with the commissioners before the tax deed on the property was issued. He said he had no knowledge of its issuance until the day the house was sold.

"That was a grave mistake, as you will discover," he wrote. "Don't you realize that the perfect law of retribution demands that the wrongs which you perpetrate upon others must be returned upon your own heads?"

County Attorney Jay McKenzie said the treasurer's affidavit of compliance shows the county's attempts to contact Powell. He said Powell did not take the opportunity for a hearing offered to him, and now that the property has been sold, the matter is out of the county commissioners' hands.

Powell argued he still owns the property based on his "allodial title." The dictionary defines that as real estate held in absolute independence, without being subject to any rent, payment, or acknowledgment of a superior authority.