After a court appearance on Aug. 25, Dan De Vaul went back to Sunny Acres to tell residents to get out, one by one.
Under order from Superior Court Judge Charles Crandall, all the residents at Sunny Acres, a working ranch and sober living facility for otherwise homeless people in SLO County, have to leave.
Where they’ll go doesn’t seem to matter much, so long as it’s not at Sunny Acres.
De Vaul, Sunny Acres’ owner, has been mired in a long court battle since late 2009, when he was convicted of misdemeanor code violations for creating unsafe living conditions on his ranch. According to the court and SLO County, various facilities—including the shacks where people slept and the converted dairy barn where they cooked meals and ate—had to be either returned to agricultural uses or demolished.
The court ordered those structures vacated. In response, De Vaul had residents cook, eat, and sleep outside. However, the structures weren’t completely emptied of clothes and other items, leading the county to believe people were violating the court order.
Crandall was noticably frustrated in court because, as he said, De Vaul was ignoring the court order.
“I’m not playing games,” he told De Vaul and his attorney John Belsher.
Crandall said De Vaul would have to clear all the residents not just from the structures, but completely off the property.
In response, De Vaul said he and other Sunny Acres managers were going to tell residents to leave by Aug. 29.
“It’s gonna get fucking ugly,” De Vaul told New Times.