CA Minutemen Could Rent Or Buy Campo Home

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What began this summer as a series of temporary civilian patrols along the border in East County could become permanent, with at least one border watch group hoping to establish a long-term address.

Real estate agents who work in the Campo area have received inquiries from people identifying themselves as part of a patrol group, or calling on behalf of one, looking to
buy or rent property. And one prospective benefactress is considering buying a property where border watchers could stay and train in exchange for maintenance.

‘The Minutemen would be able to use it if they did work around the place,’ said Kathy Severin, 58, a self-described philanthropist who says she wants to help because she is ‘a staunch supporter of volunteerism.’

Severin, who with her husband owns several properties in Chula Vista, traveled to Campo for a July patrol event held by the California Minutemen.

The group, led by an ex-postal clerk from Oceanside, has been conducting controversial armed patrols in the area on and off since then.

Participants have been allowed to use some private properties, but usually they have to camp, often right on the border.

‘We are going to work our rent off by working security of the land and stuff like that, and helping her out with stuff,’ said organizer Jim Chase, 58. ‘This one will have buildings and everything, and places to sleep, so that would be a good property.’

Severin said she hasn’t bought a property yet. She said she pays out of pocket to maintain private hospices and other charities, and had been looking for property in East County to set up a rehabilitation facility before she met the border watchers in July.

‘I would take someone like the Minutemen and say, ‘Guys, there is a tractor, I need a pad done over there,’ ‘ Severin said. ‘If I should get a place, they would physically take care of it for my foundation.’

Linda Chase, who participates in the patrols with her husband, said the main appeal of having a private place to sleep, camp and train is to be able to shake off protesters, along with the legal observers who monitor patrol groups for civil and human rights violations.

‘If they come on private land, you can arrest them,’ she said. ‘The best offense is a defense.’

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