72-year-old Villager serving jail time after dispute with tenant at rental property

George MacLauchlan

A 72-year-old Villager is serving jail time after a dispute with a tenant at a rental property in Florida’s Friendliest Hometown.

George MacLauchlan was found guilty by a jury last week in Sumter County Court on a charge of battery. He was sentenced to 159 days in jail. He began serving his sentence Tuesday at the Sumter County Detention Center.

He was arrested in April on charges of battery on a person over the age of 65 and depriving use of 911.

MacLauchlan’s 77-year-old tenant contacted law enforcement on April 16 to report that he had been assaulted by his landlord, according to an arrest report from the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office. He claimed that MacLauchlan entered his rental property at 2396 Inwood Place in the Bartow Villas in the Village of Pinellas and told the tenant he would have to leave or the police would be called. MacLauchlan reportedly began gathering his tenant’s belongings in an apparent effort to expedite his departure. The tenant attempted to call law enforcement, but MacLauchlan told him, “You’re not calling no one!” MacLauchlan pushed his tenant to the floor, grabbed the man by the collar of his shirt and dragged him out of the residence, the report said.

When deputies arrived on the scene, they found the tenant had suffered multiple abrasions and bruises.

MacLauchlan left in a black Toyota Camry but was soon detained by law enforcement.

MacLauchlan and his company, Embracing the Journey LLC, later went to court to seek the tenant’s eviction. A judge sided with MacLauchlan and on June 17 ordered the tenant’s eviction from the premises.