Doila Welch lives in a modest row-house in South Philadelphia that she and her sister inherited from her parents. Doila, her children and many members of her extended family view the home as their family haven for nearly 20 years. But in February of 2014, Doila’s security in her own home was shaken when plain-clothed police officers barged into her bedroom with guns drawn and forced her out of bed. This was not an easy task given that Doila is bedridden. This intrusion was based on an alleged marijuana sale in her home by her estranged husband that Doila did not even know about. Doila’s son—who takes her to doctors’ appointments—was kicked out of her home, and Doila found herself trapped in Philadelphia’s forfeiture nightmare. With IJ’s help, Doila is now fighting for her rights and taking on the forfeiture system that allowed this to happen.
Civil Forfeiture | Private Property
Fighting the Philadelphia Forfeiture Machine: Philadelphia Deprives People of Their Rights While Trying to Forfeit and Profit from Their Property
Police and prosecutors use civil forfeiture to strip thousands of Americans of their rights and property. Nowhere is the problem more rampant than in Philadelphia.