Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Missouri landlord Trent Cowherd claims I allowed an "outlaw" (my wife) to live in rental until, but evidence shows Cowherd is a bully of comic proportions

Trent and Sharon Cowherd
Finding humor in a story that involves an unlawful eviction, the theft of many of your worldly goods, and thuggish cops shattering your wife's arm . . . well, it's difficult. But a newly discovered document from Missouri landlord Trent Cowherd and his rogue lawyer, Craig Lowther, does add comic relief to our mostly grim tale.

The humor can be found in Cowherd's Petition for a Rent-and-Possession (R and P) order that would remove us from rental property at 4070 S. Fort in Springfield, Missouri. Cowherd is not content to simply get his rental unit back, he has his undies bunched because he somehow is convinced that someone -- namely, my wife, Carol -- had been living unlawfully in the unit with yours truly.

Never mind that on the day I signed the Rental Agreement in Missouri, I told Cowherd's leasing agent that my spouse of 25 years was in Birmingham gathering our belongings and would be joining me to live at the rental unit in Springfield -- and the leasing agent said that would be A-OK. The agent filled out the document, based on what I told her, but she neglected to write down Carol's name as a tenant or lessee. Was that on purpose? Probably so. Was it at the direction of one or more members of my family? Given how they have dumped on Carol and me since we got married, the answer probably is yes. (The Petition and Rental Agreement are embedded at the end of this post.)

If anyone ever doubts that Trent Cowherd is a crooked, dishonest, lying bully, just consider these foreboding, tough-guy words from his Petition, prepared by "attorney" Craig Lowther:

7. Upon information and belief, there is a person or persons not lawfully occupying the above described premises as either a tenant or lessee.

8. Pursuant to RSMo. 441.760, [Cowherd] requests the court order any person not lawfully occupying the dwelling unit as either a tenant or lessee be immediately removed.

Wow, sounds like I was hiding an ISIS cell in that rental unit. The humor comes when you check out page 7 of our eight-page rental agreement. That page is titled "Rental House Pet Agreement," and they must have let me fill that out because it appears to be in my squiggly hand writing -- which was more squiggly than unusual, given that I had just spent five months in an Alabama jail and was going through a bogus foreclosure on our home of almost 25 years in Birmingham.

Craig Lowther
I filled out page 7 to inform the landlord that we had two cats -- Chloe (female) and Baxter (her brother). I put down their ages (11) and their weights (13 and 11 pounds, respectively). I listed their breed (Tonkinese) and their color (tan). For the record, I told the leasing agent that Chloe and Baxter were in Birmingham with their "mother," my wife, and all three would be joining me in Springfield to live at the rental unit. The agent didn't bat an eye, said that was fine.

It wasn't until almost one year later, when our 13-month lease was almost up, that I realized the woman had neglected to put Carol's name on the lease. Was that an accident? I doubt it, especially considering that we recently discovered the R and P Petition to learn that Cowherd was making a big deal about the presence of an "outlaw" at our unit.

Let's consider what Cowherd/Lowther wanted a court to believe: That I remembered Chloe and Baxter, our cats, were going to be living with me in Springfield, and I put down all kinds of specifics about them -- but I didn't remember that I had a wife, she had been my one and only wife for 25 years, and she was going to be living with me, too.

Now, I love our pets. This blog is named in honor of our first pet -- the original Legal Schnauzer, Murphy Abigail Shuler. And I loved our cats just as much as I loved our dog. But I'm going to remember our cats and not say a word about my wife? I don't think so.

This might not be the kind of humor that appears on SNL and goes viral on the Web. But it's pretty darned funny to me, almost like an old Henny Youngman routine. "Oh yes, my cats will be with me at all times. My wife? Gee, I forgot I even had one. Who is this wife person of whom you speak? Take my wife, please!"


Anonymous said...

has anything ever been your fault? Your apparent martyrdom in the face of those who would persecute you will result in an entire religion, in your dog's name, sprouting up in 100 years.

legalschnauzer said...

@8:13 --

I don't know, you tell me. This post isn't about "anything," it's about a specific issue. What about it is my fault? Are you saying I remembered my cats were going to be living with me, but I couldn't remember my wife?

Is something ever your fault? Give us an example. For example, have you ever been part of wrongfully evicting anyone.

Anonymous said...

If Cowherd thought somebody was living there unlawfully, why didn't he do something about it earlier? He owns the frickin place, it shouldn't be hard to check.

Anonymous said...

That's one hell of a landlord trick. Landlord staff fills out the application, and then they blame tenant when something is wrong on it.

Anonymous said...

I could very easily remember my cats and forget my husband.

Anonymous said...

Simple fact: Landlords are among the scummiest people on earth. This helps prove it.

Anonymous said...

@8:13 --

I kind of like your idea about a religion. Maybe we could all attend services on Sunday morning and study the "Book of Schnauzer." It would be better than some of the crap that spews from church pulpits now.

Anonymous said...

Cowherd's wife looks like a retired Roller Derby Queen.

legalschnauzer said...

@11:44 --

Are you saying she's built like a "refrigerator with a head"? (Hat tip to the late, great Jim Croce.)

Anonymous said...

I once made the mistake of renting from Cowherd Construction, and they pulled crap like this on my neighbors and me. All of us vowed to leave as soon as our one year was up. That company is run by truly rotten people. Sorry as hell. I tell everyone I know, "Never rent or do business with Trent Cowherd."

Anonymous said...

I've seen laws where a husband-wife are considered one entity for rental purposes, and it's assumed one will be living with the other. It's possible this landlord is trying to make something out of nothing.

legalschnauzer said...

@11:57 --

There definitely are such laws in some states, and while I'm not certain about Missouri law on the issue, you probably are right that Cowherd is making "something out of nothing."

Just shows you these people are pathetic. And it suggests to me that someone was trying to screw with us before we even moved in.

Funny thing is that Cowherd probably is a right-wing zealot, but he ignores the Biblical statement that a man and a woman, when they are married, become one. These cretins are shameless

Anonymous said...

How stupid is this guy? On one hand, he's asking the court to tell YOU to leave. Then, he makes a separate issue out of making YOUR WIFE leave, too. If you're going to leave, your wife is leaving too, right?

So why wait a full year and make a big deal out of it? What's the point? Piece of sh-t.

If I were the judge, I'd say, "Mr. Cowherd, if you thought Mrs. Shuler was there unlawfully, why didn't you do something about it 11 months ago? Your own actions suggest you knew she was there lawfully, or if she wasn't, you didn't have a problem with it. Why is it a problem now?"

legalschnauzer said...

@12:05 --

Good points and very well stated. Thanks for raising these issues.

Anonymous said...

I would remember my cats and forget my kids.

Anonymous said...

A question for @8:13 --

You seem to be suggesting the issue with the rental agreement is Mr. Schnauzer's fault. Well, you can click on the rental agreement at the bottom of the post. You will notice the entire thing is filled out in one person's handwriting, except for the pet area, just as Mr. Schnauzer said. That appears to be his handwriting in the pet area. Everything else appears to be filled in by the leasing agent, who signs her name. I can't read it, but it appears to be Barrett or Brittney or something like that.

If you check the area for tenants, the leasing agent has filled in "Roger Shuler," so Roger was not allowed to even fill in his own name, much less Carol's. Again, that fits exactly with what Mr. Schnauzer says in his post.

Everything in the rental agreement fits with the post, and in fact, it's clear the leasing agent did not fill in Carol's name.

So what is your problem? Why should Roger accept fault for something the Cowherd leasing agent did?

legalschnauzer said...

@3:47 --

Thanks for pointing that out. Yes, that's my handwriting on the pets page. I believe the only other place it appears, other than my initials, is in information about our car.

legalschnauzer said...

I forgot to mention in the post that my mother went with me to sign the rental agreement; you can see her initials on it. Not long after it was filled out, and we were back home, she said something like, "You can kick Carol out any time you want because her name isn't on the lease." Having just been through five months in jail and a bogus foreclosure on our house, I wasn't in my right mind, and I'm not sure that statement even struck me. But my mother and brother both made multiple statements, while I was in Springfield and Carol still was in Birmingham, that Carol and I should get a divorce. I was in such a state of shock at the time, that I didn't even know how to respond to such nuttiness. I'm not sure their statements even registered with me then. But they register now, for sure. This tells me that the whole rental agreement thing was a scam from the get-go, with my mother and brother involved in making it happen. They also were involved in making the bogus eviction happen.

Anonymous said...

I would remember my cats and forget my mother-in-law. In fact, I could "accidentally" dump my mother-in-law in a wood chipper and forget all about it. Whoops!

Anonymous said...

@3:47 Why should Roger accept fault for something the Cowherd leasing agent did? I don't know, maybe because no matter who filled out the forms, Roger signed them. It is the signers job to read and approve the contract before signing it. You can't go back after the fact and say you don't agree with it, especially when he initialed every page.

legalschnauzer said...

@4:07 --

Very clever. Also stupid.

It's been shown in court, twice, that Carol didn't trespass. Cowherd never even raised the issue in the eviction case. You can read the interlocutory judgment, and there is nothing stated from the judge about trespassing.

Second, in the bogus criminal claim against Carol, the trespass count has been dismissed. It's gone. So, it's a matter of record that Carol did not trespass.

I wrote this post to show the Cowherd people are desperate and petty and out of touch with reality. But trespass hasn't been an issue in this matter for a long time now.

If you want to see who was violating the lease, pay the money for a court transcript and you can hear a Cowherd rep. admit they were violating the lease by trying to hold us a provision that wasn't in the lease. It was played on tape in court. I was there. Were you?

Go get a copy of that transcript -- I'm sure you can afford it -- and I'll be happy to go over it with you. You will see who actually was breaching the contract.

Since you seem to know so much about contract law, I'm sure you will want to check that out.

legalschnauzer said...

Memo to @8:00 --

Have you purchased a copy of the court transcript yet, the one where the Cowherd rep admitted they were violating the lease? Do that, and we'll discuss.

Is that how Cowherd does business on a regular basis, violating leases with impunity?

BTW, if Trent Cowherd and others from his company conspired with state actors to violate our civil rights, that's a federal crime ("Deprivation of rights under color of law"). Maybe folks who work there should start thinking about how they will look in orange. It's the new black, in case you haven't heard.

legalschnauzer said...

Memo to @11:39 --

No, of course, you don't want to discuss Cowherd's breach of contract because you work for Cowherd, and the company is corrupt to the core. Your "eviction crew" stole a bunch of our personal belongings, and you know it. You are no better than common crooks. Take some of the money you steal from tenants and get that court transcript, where your rep admitted breach of contract. While you're at, go "eff" yourself.

Thief . . . thief . . . thief.

legalschnauzer said...

Memo to @8:30 --

Since you don't work for Cowherd, I'm sure you will be glad to meet in person and discuss these matters. Give me a call or shoot me an email, and we'll set that up.

legalschnauzer said...

Memo to @8:18 --

Well, give me a call at (205) 381-5673. Be glad to talk with you.