Landlord’s daughter speaks out after Problem Solvers investigation

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- Sarah Benner, the daughter of a Grand Rapids landlord, spoke out to FOX 17 on camera today.

The FOX 17 Problem Solvers did a story on landlord Steve Benner yesterday. It involved a young mother who said she paid Benner a $680 deposit to rent a room in a Grand Rapids building. Days later, she said she found the front door was locked. The news station reached out to Steve Benner for comment. He said he would call back but never did.

Thursday, we did hear back from Benner's employee, Ron Van Netten, who said the property was in foreclosure when the $680 deposit was paid. Van Netten said the property had been taken over by the bank and another company, days later. Van Netten said the $680 is in the Comerica Bank account and Benner's assets with the bank are frozen.

Sarah Benner disagrees with the accusations some have levied against her father and his business. She came to the FOX 17 News station and wanted to clarify some things.

Watch the video for her interview with FOX 17.

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28 comments

    • Brian

      Why? Because you’re a low life thug that treats women as objects thinking they have no say in the matter? How about you go ahead and attempt to follow through on your threat and she pulls out a legally carried concealed handgun shoots your tiny little dick off and then puts two in your chest and one between your eyes? Would you like that? This young lady was speaking the truth, I also quite agree that her Dad is probably a crook, but let the courts decide that and keep your pathetically tiny dick to yourself.

  • Anonymous

    He is definitely a shady person who tries to take advantage as much as possible. And his daughter is a hot mess and appears she’ll be following in her fathers foot steps. And that’s sad bc he’s a dick!

  • Deb

    BILL, You are a pathetic excuse for a human being!!! How dare you talk about my daughter that way, she simply was defending her father to the best of her ability like most children do for there parents, you sick minded individual, I’m so glad it’s thru a Web site you talked about my daughter this way!!! With your sick twisted comment who are you to morally judge anyone, keep your filth to your self. Brian thank you for being decent and defending my daughter against that comment. She loves her dad very much and is trying to do anything she can to help him. Weather he’s been right or wrong in decisions he’s made she’s still his little girl grown up and it hurts her to see these things hurt her dad. I give her total respect that at her age handles herself very professional and is at least trying to right any wrongs she can and explain things that people don’t always know the whole story.

    • ••••••••••••••••••

      The low class uneducated crass comment toward your daughter is wrong-
      However, She is an adult (obviously) and to speak on her deadbeat father’s behalf is wrong too.
      Wake up and realize that theft is serious. Those folks gave their money in good faith and your daughters father took their money- Theft, and over 100 dollars at that-
      Which in most states equals a felony!
      Why his carcass is not in a jail cell is crazy!
      Which her public defense of these actions “may” make her an accomplice.
      What morals are being taught in your family?
      Especially when you are worried about what is being said on some news board instead of worrying about how your daughter is implicating herself in her fathers illegal activity and enabling that POS to play the victim?
      Wake up lady, He is a thief! He obviously has a history of this according to other complaints!
      Worry about whats going on at home and family instead of defending these incidents on comment boards/
      Seriously, Get some family counseling or mental help.

      • Debra

        I am totally aware of the entire situation, trust and believe that and all the possible implacation, never once did I say I agree with the situation and of course they should have their money back, The situation should have never happened, I worry about what my daughter is involving herself in on a daily basis, but as I said, right or wrong it’s her father, and shes not been old enough too see the big picture all these years, she’s just trying to help her dad she loves him, and no one can tell her any different. She is having to learn somethings the hard way like pick your battles wisely, why is this soooo hard for anyone to understand. But to bash her not knowing her as a person or her motives are wrong she is also trying to make it right for everyone, not just her father, there’s a lot more going on behind the public view.

        • Alayna

          Hi Debbie,

          No poibt in taking up defense of the situation on this format. I’d say that it’s best to tell Bill that he is a disgusting excuse for a human being and advise others that they don’t know the whole situation. Also, when it all boils down, Sara doesn’t have control of the money or the building. I wish she never put herself on TV to be torn to shreds with people’s comments as it is her father under fire, not her. He should be contacting the media; I know she’s trying her best to defend him. Send her my love.

    • Debra

      Before u comment get the facts of course it’s not worth 18 million, but the loan needed to consolidate several other properties together under the same loan with that bank are worth that amount!!! You might want to educate before u comment!

  • Dan

    Deb, seriously? Seriously?? We don’t know the whole story? Well what the hell would the whole story be exactly? I lived in that same building, you’re completely out of your mind if you think that what her dad did was right in any sense ever. Delusional morons.

    Your family completely screwed us out of a home while leaving my family and I without electricity or gas for weeks. You people are complete scum, and while I don’t agree with the “fucking up the ass” statement it quite frankly is what you people did to your tenants. I sincerely karma finishes its payout. I’m going to sit here and quietly laugh.

  • ••••••••••••••••••

    What a joke, 18 million?
    Michigan? Lol! Smirk, Lol!
    The whole state isn’t worth that much (being facetious) let alone one dumpy building such as that!
    Plus, She is obviously reading from a “script” and knows nothing of the foreclosure practice!
    This other entity she speaks of is probably her sad sack of a father under a different name, Plus a so called “man” who has his daughter do his bidding for him is no man at all!
    What a POS this guy must be to put his children up to defend him!
    Just give this family their money back you cheap pigs!
    It is common knowledge that the lender lets people know they are in foreclosure MONTHS before, NOT days!
    Why isn’t law enforcement getting involved? This thieving POS needs to be sitting in a jail cell.
    Dysfunction personified!

  • julia

    Making lude comments and threats twords my nice is not in the best interest of any of you .
    Shows your true class!
    Try it and ill be right there to make sure That…
    1# she is well protected
    #2 your threats are carried out on you!

    • Leo

      What he said was disgusting but it does not change the fact that your family are criminals and if you had any class. You would be ashamed of them. They stole from a young family with a toddler and a kindergartner. Leaving them with nothing.

      • Debra

        One man’s mistake does not make our entire family crooks or bad, again, your speaking on somthing which u know nothing about. I stated several times I do not agree with the entire situation. I do know my daughter is doing the honorable thing and that’s correct the situation.

        • Dan

          Really? The honorable thing would have been to pony up the $700 in cash immediately. It wasn’t done.

          So, no. You’re full of crap. Sorry. Karma, I hope it eats you all.

      • julia

        I have nothing to do with the family other than fact she is my niece.and that has nothing to do with defending her.i would defend any female that is threatened like this.
        There are way to many crazy people in this world that feed off comments like that and will try to follow through with someone else’s threat!

  • Anonymous

    Lol. I Personally know all the above parties and the girls mom. They are all heroin junkies. This is a felony in the making and using big words on the west side isn’t going to change that.

    • julia

      Excuse me???
      Obviously you don’t know who i am! Anyone you tried to make that claim to that knows me would tell you you are a liar!
      But i sure would like to know who you are to make that claim!

    • Debra

      Awful bold and a liar to make that comment but your not really if u have to use the name “Anonymous “to hide behind now are you!!! And I seriously doubt you know all parties or you wouldnt be saying garbage like that and would not try to damage Sarah anymore than this whole ordeal is doing to her!! Your heartless if you do know anything of this situation to even state something like that when Sarah doesn’t deserve all this crap and the rest of the family is trying to defend her.

  • just me

    While i don’t agree the fathers choices, all this poor girl did was try to tell everyone that the money is in the bank and the cannot touch it yet. That one building is not worth 18 million, there are several. Bash her father not her Geessshh! I’m sure this will be one heck of a learning experience for her. 😞

  • Anonymous

    Sara is just a much a con artist as Steve she been collecting rent and running with her dad since she was about 16. I rented a building from Steve he told me that if i fix it up the building we would exchange work for 6 month rent. I didn’t expect the building to be in the condition it was in pipe were busted were the water couldn’t be turned on, there wasn’t any heat in the building which he didn’t tell me until it got cold after 3 month of hard work of cleaning and buying paint and pipes and different thing for the place there a break in the building and everything of value is stolen the police says it a inside job . But what hurt the most that he took the rest of my thing he change the lock and said I couldn’t get my other thing until I give him 1000 dollars. than he said he would give me my things if I would sell gas for him but I had to met him late at night at some restaurant in cascade I refuse to do either. To this day Steve have not giving me my things. Steve is a crook and Sara one too because she was the one that did all his dirty work for him after Steven Jr left him. I know of so many people that he has taken thing from them or took there money , rewired there electric, were he would have one tenant thinking that there electric was included in there rent and he had a another tenant paying the bill. i would like to look up some of those people that i know that has being taken advantage by this man and would like to start a class action lawsuit maybe he would start having better business practice.