7-709. Persons entitled to defend. All persons in occupation of, or having or claiming an interest in, any of the property described in the complaint, or in the damages for the taking thereof, though not named, may appear, plead and defend, each in respect to his own property or interest, or that claimed by him, in like manner as if named in the complaint.
[(7-709) C.C.P. 1881, sec. 859; R.S., R.C., & C.L., sec. 5218; C.S., sec. 7412; I.C.A., sec. 13-709.]