Laurence Fishburne has been granted a temporary restraining order against an ex-convict who attempted to have the family evicted on New Year’s Day, claiming to be the rightful owner of the Los Angeles property, the Associated Press reported.
The man, Mark Francisco, who also goes by the name Anthony Francis, is required to stay 100 yards away from Fishburne, his wife Gina Torres and daughter Montana.
Francisco reportedly went to the Oscar-nominated actor's home on Jan. 1 and told Fishburne's wife through the security intercom that she and her family were living there illegally, court filings stated.
In addition, the ex-convict left a handwritten letter in their mail box, attempting to evict the family. According to E! Online, the letter, which included an address and phone number, said, "You are to leave this house immediately. This means all tenants are to evacuate ASAP."
Fishburne called the police and relayed to them Francisco’s identity, and that the man had a criminal record that was available through public records, according to multiple news report; the police advised the actor to obtain a restraining order.
In his filing, Fishburne said that he and his family have owned their home for 10 years. He added that two weeks prior, he received a call from Francisco, similarly stating that he owned the house. Fishburne said that police informed him of Francisco’s history of cyber-stalking and making criminal threats when advising him to obtain an order of protection.
"This is a case of stalking, and the judge had no problem in issuing a temporary restraining order to stop it," Fishburne's attorney, Donald Etra, told the AP.
The temporary restraining order was granted on Thursday; a hearing on whether the order will be extended for three years is scheduled for Jan. 23.
According to court records, Francisco has a 1993 conviction for burglary in San Diego, and he was sentenced to two years in state prison on a cyber-stalking conviction in 2010; however, he instead spent time in a state mental hospital, records show.
Fionna Agomuoh is a Technology Reporter for the International Business Times, a vegan foodie, and a lover of Electric Dance Music.