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WJBD - Local News - Sandoval Squatter Found in Contempt After Bizarre Courtroom Spectacle

Larry Evans, also known as Mfalme El Bey

Sandoval Squatter Found in Contempt After Bizarre Courtroom Spectacle

By Bruce Kropp, WJBD News

A 28-year-old Centralia man accused of squatting in a repossessed home in rural Sandoval has been sentenced to 30 days in the Marion County Jail for contempt of court.  

Judge Mark Stedelin handed down the sentence Tuesday to Larry Evans, also known as Mfalme El Bey, after he continued to interrupt his preliminary hearing in the case.  Evans brought a full size flag from Morroco that he held in front of him and told the judge at one point to be quiet because he was breaking a peace treaty.  He also scolded the judge for trying to find him in contempt, noting 'you're a public servant, you serve me'.   Stedelin gave Evans a chance to apologize, but he shouted 'no'.  

Evans had been free on $2,500 cash bond on charges of felony criminal damage to property, misdemeanor criminal trespass to property and resisting arrest.  

Evans maintains he has rights to the foreclosed property because he belonged to a group that were among the original settlers of North America.   He told the court he didn't have to abide by any U.S. laws and asked if he had committed a treaty violation with Morocco. 

The outburst came while Marion County Sheriff's Department Sergeant Kevin Cripps was trying to outline the case against Evans so the judge could determine if there was probable cause.  At one point Evans said he did not understand the charges because he didn't speak English.  Noting that Evans had been speaking English, the Judge denied his request for an interpreter who spoke Swahili.  

Evans' mother, who was in the audience, was also warned about being found in contempt when she stood and began yelling during the court hearing as well. 

After being found in contempt, Evans was quickly taken into custody by Marion County Sheriff's Deputies in the courtroom.  The preliminary hearing was then reset for June 3rd.   

Evans was able to avoid being found in contempt at an earlier court appearance after apologizing for use of foul language.  At that hearing, Evans had demanded the judge allow him to call his embassy as he only answered to the King of Morocco.   Deputies say Evans had furniture delivered to the foreclosed home on Tonti Road and had changed the locks before being apprehended in a February police chase.

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