A 64-year-old woman dubbed the "nightmare nanny" who reportedly refused to move out of an Upland family’s home despite being fired three weeks earlier says the working conditions were the stuff of bad dreams, not her.
Diane Stretton told KTLA-TV Channel 5 that she worked around the clock and never received lunch or coffee breaks. She alleged that the family took advantage of her and even tried to feed her dog food.
“There wasn’t a single day I was there, except for the two days I was sick, that I didn’t do dishes and about two or three hours of cleanup. And just that alone should’ve been almost enough to equal the value of the room,” Stretton told the news station.
She claimed she wasn’t fired by Marcella and Ralph Bracamonte but quit days before they terminated her.
Stretton has not responded to requests for additional comment.
But Marcella Bracamonte told The Times that she and her husband have been trying to evict Stretton from their home after she stopped doing work and retreated to her bedroom, coming out only for meals.
The couple found Stretton via an advertisement on Craigslist and hired her to take care of their three children, which she did initially, even teaching the couple’s youngest son how to read.
“I was pleasantly surprised with who she was,” Marcella Bracamonte said.
But Stretton’s work, they say, dwindled, and they rarely saw her.
So the couple gave Stretton a letter, asking her to leave or meet the terms of their agreement. But Marcella Bracamonte said Stretton refused to move out of their home.
The couple even reached out to police, who declined to step in because Stretton had already been living there since March.
The Bracamontes went to court, but they say a judge sided with Stretton, contending they had not served her with the proper paperwork and so she had the right to reside at their home.
The couple feared Stretton would file a lawsuit against them, as she has done more than a dozen times in San Diego County, according to court records.
Stretton is even named three times in California's Vexatious Litigant List for filing multiple lawsuits and frivolous motions to delay a case.
Then, after weeks of fighting, the couple took drastic measures. They put a lock on the refrigerator, removed food from their pantry and canceled cable and Internet services, Marcella Bracamonte said.
“I feel like a prisoner in my own home,” she said.
Stretton reportedly planned to move out in 30 days but things quickly changed, KTLA reported.
Last week, news crews began appearing at the couple’s home, which has apparently kept Stretton away, Marcella Bracamonte said.
She has not returned to the home since Thursday, even though her belongings remain locked away inside her bedroom.
But now, Marcella Bracamonte said her attorney received a letter from Stretton, saying she would move out in a few days but only under certain conditions.
Stretton apparently asked the couple to be allowed to shower because she has been homeless and sleeping in her car since television crews showed up to their home last week to report on the issue.
“I have no idea where she is at,” Marcella Bracamonte said. “I just want her to leave.”