An elderly couple thrust into the public spotlight when word spread about their pending eviction from the house they owned for half a century caught a break this week when a judge gave them a 60-day reprieve.
Hank and Helen Kawecki are being kicked out after they say their grandson defrauded them out of the deed, defaulted on loans and lost the house to foreclosure.
"Being kicked out of your home of 56 years is one of those things that can't be reversed very easily," said their attorney, Ed Elrod. "It affects your comfort. It affects your stability."
The Kaweckis faced a deadline to move out of their Thousand Oaks home by Wednesday. But they got a last-minute reprieve when a judge ruled Tuesday that they could stay for 60 more days.
Doug Emerson, the couple's neighbor, said their grandson convinced them to turn the deed over to him with the promise of supporting them financially for the rest of their lives.
The grandson mortgaged the property with loans, defaulted on the loans and lost the home, Elrod said.
The Ventura County Sheriff's Department is investigating the case, but detectives have made no arrests.
The Kaweckis have filed a lawsuit alleging fraud.
More than 2,000 people donated more than $76,000 for the couple on a GoFundMe page as of Wednesday evening.
Dennis Block, the attorney representing Coastal Capital Group LLC, a private lender that currently owns the house, said he sympathizes with the Kaweckis, but every day that they remain there, his client loses money.
"We're not arguing that they're not a victim," said Block. "But what we are arguing is that my client is a victim too."