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Farm Woman Gets Jail Sentence In Foreclosure Fight

June 17, 1987

CHASKA, Minn. (AP) _ A woman was sentenced to jail Wednesday for scuffling with a deputy during a hearing concerning the repossession of her family’s farm.

Beverly Gennrich of rural Cologne pleaded guilty to obstructing the legal process, and in exchange for her plea, charges of fifth-degree assault, disorderly conduct and criminal damage to property were dropped.

Her husband and son already have been sentenced to jail for violently resisting repossession of equipment on their farm.

Mrs. Gennrich, 53, was sentenced to 30 days in jail by Judge Robert Bruenig, who suspended 10 of the days and gave her credit for time spent this week in jail, which would work out to at least a day. She will be on a work- release program while serving the jail term.

Bruenig also ordered her to make restitution in the amount of $142.15 to replace a deputy sheriff’s glasses that were broken in the courtroom scuffle March 30. She was in court on a contempt complaint involving an attempt by the Production Credit Association of Buffalo to take the mortgaged property.

Mrs. Gennrich is to begin serving the jail sentence Monday, the same time her husband, Herman, 55, and son, Robert, 31, begin serving their 90-day sentences.

The Gennrichs were arrested Monday at their farm after failing to appear in court. The men were arrested without resistance, but deputies had to force their way into the house to arrest Mrs. Gennrich when she wouldn’t come to the door.

The men pleaded guilty Tuesday to criminal damage to property involving their resistance to attempts by authorities to repossess their equipment and livestock on Feb. 2. Bruenig also ordered them to make restitution for damage to a livestock truck and a loan officer’s car.

In exchange for their pleas, charges against both men of obstructing the legal process and an additional charge against Herman Gennrich of making terroristic threats were dropped.

After Wednesday’s court hearing, County Attorney Mike Fahey said he expects no further problems with the Gennrichs.

″A lot of people are glad that they could be brought to justice and can now go on with their lives,″ he said.

Mrs. Gennrich issued a brief statement after the hearing that read in part: ″Both sides have made mistakes - the lenders and the borrower - and we have learned the borrower is a slave to the lender and it’s better not to go to banks for any loan.″

The Gennrichs’ land was auctioned off last month as part of foreclosure proceedings, but the family was allowed to farm the land for one year under a grace period provision of the auction.

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