Local man could return to jail over items in yard

by: Torie Wells Updated:


CLOVER, S.C. - They say one man's junk is another man's treasure.

“I had all kind of stuff and I gave a lot away and junked a lot," said John Ramsey, from Clover.

Ramsey said the things in his backyard are his livelihood.

"I got antique stuff here people would give me a fortune for," he said.

He feels so strongly about it that he spent the weekend in jail, and he has more weekend time to spend, after Code Enforcement said he refused to clean up.

"It was killing me to be in that tight cell," Ramsey said.

There are people who didn't want to see that happen. Some saw his story, came to his home and put a fence up. They hoped it would hide his stuff and keep him from going to jail. It didn't work.

"They say it's not going to do no good," Ramsey said.

Eyewitness News spoke with the Code Enforcement officer on the phone. He said the fence isn't a solution -- the stuff behind it needs to go. The officer said that if he saw significant progress, he'd go talk to the judge.

Ramsey said he feels like he's being singled out. He has received support from across the country, with some people even sending him money, and he said he's not the only one who has stuff in his yard.

In fact, Eyewitness News saw several homes where things were piled up outside. The Code Enforcement officer said when Ramsey originally received a letter to clean up, 38 other homes did as well.

He said Ramsey is the only one who hasn't made an effort to fix things. But his friend said he has.

"He's got some junk there he needs to get rid of, but he has gotten rid of junk and he has cleaned up and that's what I think the judge needs to ride down here and see for himself," said David Bowles.

Eyewitness News asked Ramsey what's next, and he said he's not giving up.

If nothing changes, he will be going back to jail Friday.