DeKalb County

This man says squatters took over his home – he got arrested when he called the police on them

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — A DeKalb County man says squatters broke into his home in February and are still there.

Backlogs with courts and the marshal’s office have left him legally unable to enter his own home.

Channel 2 consumer investigator Justin Gray has learned there’s finally an eviction order, but the homeowner is still waiting.

Now he’s waiting on the DeKalb marshals’ schedule to be able to actually evict the squatters.

Two people have died in this home from overdoses since this all started, and code enforcement has even cited the homeowner for not properly maintaining the house he legally can’t access.

Tim Arko said just days after his tenants moved out of his East Lake rental home, he showed up to find someone had broken in.

He said as soon as he pulled into the driveway, someone pointed a gun at him.

“I just jumped the fence and ran. I didn’t know what else to do,” Arko said.

That was all the way back in February. Six months later, the alleged squatters are still living in Arko’s DeKalb County home.


“I didn’t walk in on a family eating dinner. I walked in on weapons, a prostitute, a bunch of dogs in the back, my fence broken down,” Arko said.

But it was Arko police took into custody that day back in February after he called 911.

“They told the police that I was a home invader and that it was their home. And so I ended up being arrested and detained,” Arko said.

Since then, Arko has been fighting to evict the squatters in court. After months of court delays, the eviction order is finally signed but now he’s waiting on the marshals.

“No one likes, you know, being in the court system, but it becomes even worse when it seems broken down,” said John Ernst, Arko’s attorney.

Back in May, we were there as a squatter at another DeKalb County home was evicted and arrested.

In that case, after a Channel 2 Action News story, the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office bypassed the courts and served an intruder affidavit after Army Lt. Col. Dalia Dure’s home was taken over by squatters.

“I felt violated,” Dure told Gray at the time.

One of the alleged squatters at Arko’s home yelled at Gray while he was in front of the home shooting video, saying that he’s no squatter.

“You didn’t break into this house?” Gray asked the alleged squatter.

“Oh no sir,” the person said.

“Did someone break into the house?” Gray asked.

“No, nobody broke into the house,” the person said.

“I feel like it’s very heavily weighted towards these trespassers and criminals, not people that got duped,” Arko said.

Arko was never charged with a crime once he showed police that it was his property. But it’s now been six months of waiting on the courts.

Arko has been told by marshals that he should be able to evict in the beginning of September.