FARGO, N.D. (KVLY) Yalonda Solseng had only officially lived in Chestnut Ridge apartments for a couple days, and most of her belongings were still in the garage —Or at least that's what she thought when she went down to move some things back in June.
"All of a sudden the whole garage was empty. It'd been swept out. Like there wasn't even that cotton stuff or leaves in there. There was nothing! And we're like, 'Holy crud! We've been robbed!'" Solseng said.
Solseng and her roommate called police, who told the two it was probably a moving truck error— A scenario Solseng says she wishes would have been the case.
"You feel like you lost everything. You feel like your world is just crumbling," she said.
Her apartment later told her everything inside the garage had been thrown away, because they thought the owners of the items no longer lived there or had been evicted.
"I just lost it. I started bawling because there was so much in there I can't get back," she said.
Solseng says the day before their items were thrown, management had emailed and called her to verify exactly which garage was hers. However, Solseng didn't see or listen to those inquiries until it was already too late.
"They never got a hold of me. I didn't get a notice! Nothing. I had no idea this was going to happen to me," Solseng said.
Among the items now sitting in the dump were Solseng's father's Vietnam uniforms, her grandmother's vanity, and *several* other family keepsakes and memorabilia.
"I lost my dad's baby photos. And it's just been really tough to do this!" Solseng said.
Solseng says about 75 percent of her belongings now sit at the city dump. She says her winter gear, grills, clothes, as well as her photography gear and memory cards were all inside the garage at the time it was emptied.
"I had videos of two women who got to welcome their new bundle of joy, and I don't have those at all. And neither will they," she said.
However, with promise to be compensated, Solseng and her roommate worked on a list of the multitude of items once inside their garage.
"It took us hours because then they want the price and then we're trying to get the brand name. And it's like who knows all of their stuff in their garage? I mean, I literally had so much. I'm still thinking of stuff to this day that I didn't think of!" Solseng said.
Solseng says she and her roommate were hoping for a settlement around $80-100,000.
Instead it came out to $8,685—An offer meant to be split between the two. Eight thousand for their belongings and the $685 to compensate a month's rent.
Solseng says the two later counter-offered around $26,000— $22,000 for the large amount of items Solseng lost in the mix-up, and around $4,000 for her roommates camping gear now lost at the dump.
Solseng says Goldmark quickly declined their counter.
"I kinda thought, 'Does my stuff mean anything to you? Does this situation mean anything to you?' I don't feel like they're sorry. I think they just want this to go away and for us to leave them alone," Solseng said.
However, that's not an option for Solseng and her roommate. Solseng says they will not be taking the $8,685, and instead say they now plan to head to court.
"We're gonna do our best to get back a fraction of what we lost and move on I guess," Solseng said.
We reached out to Goldmark and in a statement they said:
The residents put their belongings in a garage identified with a different number than what was stated on their lease. The garage where their belongings were placed was tied to an apartment whose residents were evicted. Believing that the items were abandoned by the evicted residents they were disposed of. It is an unfortunate situation. Goldmark sympathizes with the tenants and is working with them in an effort to address their concerns.
We asked Goldmark who's fault it was that the tenants had the wrong garage keys, we did not get a response back.
Solseng and her roommate currently have a GoFundMe account for their attorney fees, as well as to help with the cost of replacing their lost items. You can find their page here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/lawyer-fees-to-replace-thrown-items