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home : opinions : commentary May 26, 2016

2/14/2013 1:09:00 PM
Commentary: What happened to Ivo Buddeke never should have happened
Ivo Buddeke
Ivo Buddeke

Dan Engler

This is the West and the tradition of a man defending his property is obviously alive and well.

Earlier this week, Rimrock property owner Ivo Buddeke was acquitted on allegations of disorderly conduct with a weapon stemming from a case nearly two years ago. Buddeke was accused of threatening surveyors and construction crews with a shotgun.

Yes, Buddeke did confront the surveyors and construction crews. And, yes, when they basically ignored him he did resume the debate while carrying a shotgun. He did not, in the eyes of jurors, directly threaten anyone with the gun, or point it at any one.

For that, he was roughed, cuffed, and arrested.

But here is the catch. He was right all along about where the boundaries of his property were located. The surveyors and construction people were not working in a legal right of way. Instead, they were trespassing, and they ignored the complaints of the property owner who alerted them of the transgression.

An interesting point of comparison to how this project was handled can be seen with the project now under way by Arizona Public Service to construct a 69-kilovolt power feeder line and a 12kv distribution line from Prairie Lane area in Verde Village to the power sub-station near the intersection of Cornville Road and Page Springs Road. More than a year before that project began, APS alerted all impacted property owners by certified mail with the particulars of the project. It fully explained the impacts to the property owners, the right-of-way and easement issues, and in some instances even offered to pay property owners for such easements and permission to access their property. This was all done a full year an advance of any work being done, and, thus, allowing plenty of time for any disputes to be resolved.

What happened to Ivo Buddeke should never have happened. The whole dispute could have been avoided had the Montezuma Rimrock Water Company properly communicated with property owners and respected their property rights.

When someone advises that you are illegally trespassing on their property, it’s time to stop work and move on until the dispute is resolved.

This is, after all, the West and folks still believe in the concept of protecting and defending their property.

And well they should.

Related Stories:
• Buddeke acquitted of weapons charges in water company dispute

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Article comment by: @ PF

You don't have a clue, do you? MR Water would have found some other way to make Ivo's life miserable. Hope you never cross anyone with friends in a government agency.

Posted: Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Article comment by: P F

I just wonder how much of this would have happened had Mr. Buddeke not brandished his weapon?

Posted: Thursday, February 21, 2013
Article comment by: Tweetie Byrd

It is high time for Montezuma Rimrock Water Company to cease and desist from their ongoing shenanigans, and by all means Mr. Buddeke should be well compensated for having to go through all these wrongful actions!

Posted: Monday, February 18, 2013
Article comment by: Robert Bueche

A few clarifications as was admitted in court. In this case, Ivo was not just the property owner, he was the Registered Land Surveyor who had provided MR Water Company a Survey of the area in question, years prior. The "surveyors" he encountered were not Registered Land Surveyors, the one in charge admitted he was an EIT (Engineer In Training).

There is a sign outside Mr. Buddeke's front door indicating he is a Registered Land Surveyor. Further, the owner of the water company and her husband, and the owner of the construction company, were all present, and all knew Mr. Buddeke, and all knew he was a Registered Land Surveyor, yet none deferred to the only knowledgeable authority present, who was in fact, Ivo Buddeke.

Yes we in the West believe in the concept of defending and protecting our property, moreover, Mr. Buddeke showed the jury he believed in the rule of Law. His taking a gun out of his home was not capricious and happened only after he had verbally confronted the trespassers, called 911, and called his attorney to see if taking a gun out was Lawful, which it was.

It seemed apparent through testimony and Ivo's video that he had not Disturbed the Peace. If the Jury felt he had, then they also concluded that he was Justified according to the Law as read to them by Judge Bluff. Specifically, ARS 13-407 which provides Justification for the threat (but not the use) of deadly force when protecting your "real" property against criminal trespass/destruction. By all means, do as Ivo did, consult with an attorney to learn your rights, then you can Legally exercise those rights to protect and defend yourself and your property.

Posted: Sunday, February 17, 2013
Article comment by: Vince Broud

What do you expect from a dysfunctional Prosecutor's Office?

Posted: Sunday, February 17, 2013
Article comment by: itsy bitsy Spider

You certainly do have this one right, Mr. Engler. What are the chances, now that a jury has determined Montezuma Rimrock Water Company's construction crew was trespassing, the prosecutor's office will cite the company for the crime and collect reimbursement for both it's legal costs and Mr. Beddeke's? This is an outrage, and Mr. Beddeke should not have to sue anyone to at least recover his expenses. Nor should the tax payers foot the bill.

Posted: Thursday, February 14, 2013
Article comment by: Right on Mr. Engler!

And thank you very much for making sure Ivo Beddeke's acquittal gets the attention it deserves.
Cass Scott

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