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Two men in jail over civil land dispute

By Kyle Horan
Published On: Jun 12 2013 05:55:01 PM CDT
Updated On: Jun 18 2013 04:50:17 PM CDT
BEAUFORT -

Two Carteret County men, who were found in civil contempt of court, will remain in jail until they agree to tear down the homes they've lived in on the land they grew up on.

In an area North of the town of Beaufort, the family of Melvin Davis and Licurtis Reels has lived near waterside property for 100 years. However, Carteret County courts ruled multiple times the land on the 400 block of Silver Dollar Rd. is not theirs.

It's a case that has been going on for decades. It started when the original owner of the property died without making a will.

One member of the family obtained the land using Torrens Law. Years later, he sold the land to two men who then sold it to Adams Creek development. Another family member remained living there, not in agreement with the sale.

After numerous appeals, the courts said the sale is valid. The original sale was legal.

The most recent ruling affirmed previous trials, that Adams Creek Associates is the owner of the land.

However, family members said they won't be giving up anytime soon.

"We want to be heard in court. At the supreme court level because we feel like we are due that," Kim Duhon, the jailed men's niece said. "We're not going to stop fighting."

In order for the two men to get out of jail, they have to sign an order stating they will tear down their houses and leave the land.