Ashe County vs R.J. Combs
Is it ever going to stop?
The feud between Ashe County and "R.J." Combs has been going on for 6 long years. During this time, the residents of Ashe County have been split down the middle as to who's side they're on.
Some think the Ashe County officials should just leave R.J. alone. After all, he's just an old man living with his brother in the mountains. It's not like he's hurting anyone.
But others think R.J. needs to listen to what the county and the courts are telling him to do with his land. After all, if you bend the rules for one person, you have to bend the rules for everyone.
Do you think the government has the right to tell us how to live?
So what's this feud about?
In 2004, Ashe County voted on and passed into law a new Junkyard Ordinance. The regulations in this ordinance affected any residence or business that had more than 6 non-running cars or at least 600 total feet of "junk material". So R.J. Combs joined the over 100 people who suddenly found their homes classified as a junkyard.
Letters were sent out and most complied with the new regulations by either getting rid of the junk or erecting a privacy fence. But R.J. Combs refused to do either. This has led to 6 years of court dates, judgments, fines and penalties. And his property hasn't changed one bit.
- Jefferson Post - County takes junkyard violators to court
Junkyard operators in Ashe County have had over three years to come into compliance with an ordinance passed in June 2004 to help clean up the county. Most have done so, but a handful have not, and they could face court action next month. Ashe Cou...
- Jefferson Post - County state action sought for dump site
Persistence pays off in getting attention, but whether the intended goal will be accomplished in a timely manner remains to be seen. Glendale Springs resident Huber Hanes has been disgusted for years about a junkyard and roadside hazard on Old Wi...
- Jefferson Post - County wins case against Combs
Ashe County was successful in its suit against R.J. Combs earlier this month, after a more than five-year effort to get the property cleaned up along Old Wilkesboro Road. But though the battle is won, the war is not yet over. According to Tim Winters
- Jefferson Post - County gets judgment in junkyard case
According to Ashe County Planner Zach Edwardson, the county has received a civil court judgment against R.J. Combs over his junkyard situation, but whether the situation will be resolved is yet to be decided. A judge has signed an order allowing ...
I know it looks bad - but like I said, we're in the country.
What do the residents of Ashe County have to say?
In a big city, this probably wouldn't be important. But to the 1,500 residents of Jefferson, North Carolina, it's front page news. Everybody has an opinion and most aren't shy about sharing it.
- GoAshe Forum: Trash on Old Wilkesboro Rd
Why does the county allow **** to get away with this? I know that the commisioners and Dan McMillann are well aware of this but
- GoAshe Forum: Junk!!
Why dont people mind their own business instead of meddling and trying to tell others what they can do with and on their own property
- GoAshe Forum: the Junkyard issue, GO Mr. Fitzwater!!
First to leap to mind is the junkyard issue in the county. It needs to be noted that the junkyards have been greatly reduced by the county, but not done away with entirely. Junkyards are useful businesses on a lot of levels for a lot of people
Even I have an opinion
R.J. lives on a seldom used back road about 15 minutes from town. So most of the residents of Jefferson aren't affected one way or the other by this feud or it's eventual outcome. My family's not that lucky. R.J. Combs is our next door neighbor. I look at his junk every day. I notice when he's added something new. And I notice when he's moved things around. When his cows run the fence, my house is where they come to pass the time. I think this entitles my opinion to carry a little more weight than Joe Schmo's. Here's what I think:
Leave him alone! The county has wasted 6 years trying to get R.J. to comply. He hasn't budged an inch and anyone that knows R.J. knows he never will. He's the very definition of stubborn. Besides, why does it matter that we can see a few junk cars, some scrap metal and a bunch of old boxes while we're driving down the road? It's not like we live in the middle of some posh suburban neighborhood. This is farm country.
What do you think?
Do you think Ashe County should stop pushing R.J. to comply with the county ordinance?
The county is fining R.J. Combs
$50 a day until he cleans up the mess. His total fines so far add up to over $200,000!
Sometimes I think the Ashe County officials have something against R.J. and Tommy. In addition to the whole junkyard feud, the county also went after their cattle. Two years ago R.J. and Tommy were arrested and charged with 16 counts of animal cruelty. In addition, all 17 of their cattle were seized and "relocated". The animal control officials alleged that the two brothers were neglecting the animals by not providing them with food and water.
I'll tell you right now, it was a bunch of bull (pun intended). Although they own some of the ugliest cattle I've ever seen, they've always provided food and water. In fact, one of the counties complaints is the hay that's stacked too close to the road. The case was eventually dismissed and the cattle were returned, along with a big bill from the veterinarian who checked them over when they were taken.
- Jefferson Post - Two face cruelty charges
Ashe County Animal Control and the Ashe County Sheriff’s Department arrested two Jefferson men last week and charged them with cruelty to animals by failure to provide necessary sustenance. Rufus Johnny “R.J.” Combs and Tommy Com...
- The Mountain Times: Family defends brothers charged in Ashe County animal neglect case
Friends and family of two brothers charged last month with neglecting a herd of cattle, told Ashe County Com-missioners Monday night the two were being persecuted for being poor. Gabriel Miller addressed the Board of Commissioners meeting and protest
Do you think Ashe County is bordering on harassment?
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