Man Charged In Foreclosure, Rental Scheme

Monday, May 18th 2009, 10:28 pm
By: News On 6

Editor's note: The State dismissed Count 2 against Remington in June of 2009. On June 25, 2012, Judge James Caputo ordered Count 1 dismissed with prejudice. The judge ordered Remington's record with regard to Count 1 be expunged, since Remington had satisfied the conditions set out by the court after pleading no contest.

Order of Expungement

By Lori Fullbright, The News On 6

TULSA, OK -- The News On 6 first reported on Mike Remington, a man accused of renting foreclosed homes he did not own and had no legal right to rent in February. Because of that story, police got involved and now, there's a warrant out for Remington's arrest.

Tulsa County prosecutors charged Mike Remington with two felonies, obtaining money by false pretense or con.

Remington was allegedly finding homes in foreclosure where the owners had already moved, and then renting those homes to unsuspecting people.

2/10/2009  Related Story: The News On 6 Investigates: Renter Beware

One of those unsuspecting people was Forrest Vaught.  He and his wife found a house for rent on Craig's list and contacted the man renting it, Mike Remington.  They signed a lease and paid him $950 a month.

Forrest did wonder why the key Remington gave him only fit the front door.

"The front door key lock doesn't open the garage door on the side and doesn't open the back door of the house, why would it only open the front door?" said Forrest Vaught.

Forrest was right to be worried.

Records show Remington didn't own the house at 8826 East 91st Place in Tulsa and had no legal right to rent it to anybody.  Just two months after moving in, Forrest and his wife had to move out, because they learned the house was in foreclosure and it was set for sheriff's auction.

The house Forrest was living in belonged to Janet Bergquist.  She'd moved out 15 months earlier and had no idea anyone was living there until she was contacted by The News on 6.

"I was dumbfounded, what, are you serious? I mean, it was just amazing. I couldn't believe the audacity of someone to do that," said Janet Bergquist.

When The News On 6 confronted Remington about Bergquist's house and others he was accused of renting illegally, he lied.  First there was a denial.  But then, he said the mortgage companies gave him permission to rent the houses.  And, finally, he said the homeowners let him do it.

Janet Bergquist told The News On 6 she never even met Mike Remington and did not give him permission to rent her home.

"No, had never heard of him until you called me," said Janet Bergquist.

Bergquist is glad charges have been filed and hopes the justice system throws the book at Remington.