There were no takers at sheriff sale for the Lewes home of convicted pedophile Earl Bradley. The house will revert back to mortgage holder U.S. Bank.
Bidding on the Savannah Road house opened at $230,000 but no one put in a bid. Deputy Tina Timmons of the Sussex County Sheriff’s Office said the sale is subject to confirmation by the Delaware Superior Court Friday, June 22.
At that point, the property will revert back to the bank, which could tear down the house if it were so inclined, Timmons said.
“They will assume the property. After confirmation, it’s their choice what they do with it. Sometimes they will put it on the market and try to resell it to recoup some of their funds. They may sell it to a private investor,” she said.
Thomas Barnett, attorney for U.S. Bank, did not comment or answer questions regarding the sale.
The bank had foreclosed on the property in October, seeking $560,000 in unpaid mortgage payments and late penalties. Bradley’s BayBees Pediatrics office was foreclosed on by Fulton Bank last year. It, too, did not sell at sheriff sale, but it was later purchased from the bank by Realtor Bruce Geyer, who had the structures demolished Oct. 10.
Timmons said some out-of-state bidders had inquired about the property, but no bids were made.
Bradley has not lived at the home since his arrest in December 2009. He was convicted in August of 24 counts of rape, assault and sexual exploitation of his child patients.
Realtor George Thomasson said he had not seen the interior of the home, but similar homes in downtown Lewes have recently sold for $425,000 to $475,000. Thomasson said given its previous owner, this is a stigmatized property, which is likely to reduce its selling price. If the house were sold for land value only, a prospective buyer would have to assume the expense of removing the house, he said.
If demolition is in the cards, the man who tore down Bradley’s office complex, contractor Harry Caswell, said he’s up for an encore if logistics could be worked out. “If I could make it happen I’d be willing to do it," Caswell said. "The last one was fun.”