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Woman returns from funeral to find squatter living in her apartment, pawning her things

Posted: 2:21 PM, Sep 06, 2019
Updated: 2019-09-06 14:21:37-04

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A woman left Memphis for a funeral in Africa, and while she was gone, she says a pair of squatters moved into her apartment and stole thousands of dollars worth of valuables, including family heirlooms.

One of those unwelcome visitors is behind bars and told police a bizarre story of how she came to live in someone else's home, according to WREG .

Police said Shauna Arnold took up residence in the apartment in July with a man she called Travis.

The woman who actually rents the unit in the Harmony Woods apartment complex was out of the country for a funeral when Arnold and Travis allegedly moved in, stealing and pawning valuables like jewelry and electronics and vandalizing the apartment.

According to police, Arnold was seen leaving the apartment and questioned by a neighbor who knew the real resident was out of the country.

Some residents even said they had seen her in the area before.

"She be walking up and down this street, down National Street," Linda Sherrod said. "I've seen her before."

Authorities got involved after the victim's sister came to check on the apartment and found a squatter inside.

Arnold reportedly told police that Travis said it was his apartment, and she could live there if she paid him $10 a day because the renter was in jail. She said she witnessed Travis stealing valuables from the apartment and selling them.

According to police, Arnold also had some of the victim's property when she was arrested.

Police are still looking for the man called Travis.

For Sherrod, this burglary is nothing short of bizarre.

"It shouldn't have happened, period," she said. "People need to leave people's stuff alone and work for themselves if they want it."

When the victim returned to Memphis, she told police she didn't know Shauna Arnold or anyone named Travis, and they didn't have permission to be in her apartment.

Arnold remains in jail.