Squatters arrested for drugs, burglary

Squatters arrested for drugs, burglary
Sara Lena Sanders (Source: Baxter Co. Sheriff's Office)
Sara Lena Sanders (Source: Baxter Co. Sheriff's Office)

BAXTER COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - An alert neighbor called authorities after seeing some unwanted guests at a home without the owner around.

Baxter County Sheriff John Montgomery stated 34-year-old Christopher Gene Sanders and 36-year-old Sara Lena Sanders were arrested on Aug. 25.

Deputies responded to the residence in the 400-block of Springlake Drive in Mountain Home for a report about suspected trespassers.

The owner of the home was out of town, according to Montgomery, and a neighbor called the sheriff's office after seeing "suspicious persons" at the residence. The homeowner confirmed that no one had permission to be there.

Deputies spoke with the couple and during the investigation found that Christopher Sanders knew the son of the property owner. He had spent the night at the home about 10 months ago.

However, the couple admitted they did not have permission to be in the home and also said they came in through a back door.

A search of the home turned up about 8.1 grams of marijuana and "various articles of drug paraphernalia" which Christopher Sanders admitted was his, according to the sheriff.

Montgomery stated the couple had "apparently been living in the house for a number of days."

Both were arrested and booked for residential burglary, theft of property, possession of a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

They were released after posting $15,000 bond, each. The couple will be back in circuit court on Sept. 14.

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