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What to do, drug dealer neighbors

chemgirl

Ideal_Rock
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Sep 16, 2009
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So I posted in the rant thread about finding drug paraphernalia in my garden.

Would love some advice.

Our city has a problem where priests from an alternative shurch rent out apartments and houses for drug addicts. While this is a nice idea in theory, it has resulted in an increase in crime, terrorised neighbors, meth labs, and brothels in family neighborhoods.

Landlords can't evict because the leases are paid.

One house, a historic building, had the door ripped off and holes dug through the walls when the owners tried to lock the tenants out. The house sat with no door for most of the summer and 50+ people going in and out. Eventually there were so many people living there and the house was in touch bad shape that it was declared a fire hazard and condemned. This house, before the tenants, would have sold for $800,000s.

Apparently this same church has rented a house 5 down from me. The landlords had no idea of the use, but I don't know if they particularly care.

We call the police at least once a week because of people fighting in their yard, ramming the door, or screaming. Seriously we are not even that close to this house, but I could hear banging while in the shower last weekend and sure enough, it was a guy screaming and ramming the door. Someone leaving the house followed my elderly neighbor and threatened her the other day (she took his picture and called 911, not an old lady to be messed with).

So last night I'm prepping my rose garden for winter and I find a pipe with residue, a lighter, and baggies. I call the police and they offered to pick it up, but couldn't do anything more about it.

We have been calling in all bylaw violations and informing the HOA about everything they can fine for. We were hoping that the landlords or renters would get annoyed by the fines and leave. Well apparently this church has been paying all of the fines and don't seem to care. Meanwhile their yard looks like an episode of Hoarders and other people are starting to violate HOA because they figure why not?

So yeah would appreciate any advice.
 

monarch64

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Sounds like the priests have Sister Acted themselves into a conundrum. I think you and other concerned neighbors need to get together and meet with the clergy members first to discuss alternatives, and after that (when nothing has still been done) get the city involved by contacting your district council person and attending city council meetings. (Assuming that is the form of government you have in your city--I'm just basing my response on what I would do here in mine.) Generally, making a stink about this using all avenues will make something happen more than just calling the police all the time. Contact local newspapers and television stations with the story. I'm sure they'd love to get pictures or video of used needles and baggies in your rose garden, not to mention condemned buildings, broken doors, holes dug through walls, etc.

I have to wonder if the parishioners know exactly what their tithes are funding? :-o Heck, why aren't THEY housing these people?
 

smitcompton

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Hi,

I would contact and inform owners in your area or development of these problems before you get anymore renters. You can get their names from the tax records, usually the assessors office, which are public records. The assessors office is usually helpful and will show you how to read the record books or microfische. I've done it myself when there s an owner who isn't taking care of his property while having a renter there. You need the owners co-operation to evict.. It does not matter if they have a lease, or its paid up. Every lease contains some clause referring to behavior or destruction of property.

I agree with everything Monarch wrote too. You need to get other neighbors involved. It takes work, unfortunately.


Annette
 

chemgirl

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smitcompton|1446654369|3945612 said:
Hi,

I would contact and inform owners in your area or development of these problems before you get anymore renters. You can get their names from the tax records, usually the assessors office, which are public records. The assessors office is usually helpful and will show you how to read the record books or microfische. I've done it myself when there s an owner who isn't taking care of his property while having a renter there. You need the owners co-operation to evict.. It does not matter if they have a lease, or its paid up. Every lease contains some clause referring to behavior or destruction of property.

I agree with everything Monarch wrote too. You need to get other neighbors involved. It takes work, unfortunately.


Annette

We do have the names of the owner and everyone in the development is aware of the problem. We are talking house after house of professionals and families with well manicured lawns and then this place that has broken furniture in the yard, piles of garbage, graffiti. It's a pretty stark contrast.

The development is a bit different in that the houses and building envelope ate individually owned, but the property itself is condo. So my yard is actually a fenced area facing a park and amenities area. The park is private with gates, but fairly easy to get in if you try. My point is there are many rules since there is a common element and I get citations regularly for my roses not being trimmed properly etc. Once I put out an umbrella that wasn't an authorized color, in my back yard, it's seriously that controlled. Everything looks pristine and then there is the house in question.

We have our annual general meeting in a few weeks and will bring it up to the group and see what we can do. Our development allows rentals to families, but no rooming houses so we will see if there is anything they can do.

I'm in Ontario where there is a tenant protection act that makes it really difficult to evict anyone as long as they are paying rent. For example it is illegal here to ask for a damage deposit or say a property doesn't allow pets.
 

azstonie

Ideal_Rock
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You have my sympathy, you do.

Time to call those priests/owners/landlords every.single.time. you are disturbed in any way by these tenants. Day and especially NIGHT. Show up to services where those priests work and during the Passing of the Peach walk right up to them and tell them your house is no longer peaceful because of their Not In My Own Backyard policies. Stand and speak during the service, THAT will get you some attention,the church members can understand someone whose home is no longer peaceful or safe taking steps to change that. Hold up the exiting line leaving the church to further press your case with the priests. Put signs in your yard calling them out on this by their name and church name. Anonymity is the mother of bad behavior.

The tenants are exhibiting the behavior they are allowed to. Go to the entity who is allowing it.

These priests are the ones who can 'fix' this. Be the squeaky wheel. There are lots of places those priests can put their tenants. Make your immediate environs out of the question. No one needs a focused person with a legitimate grievance showing up every day to state their grievance.

Make dealing with you more work than simply moving their tenants.
 

telephone89

Ideal_Rock
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I'm quite sure that landlords CAN evict if they are using the house as a brothel. Unless they are the dumbest landlords alive, I'm sure they had something in the lease about that, and I'm also sure ON (I think you're in on?) law has some sort of landlord protection in cases like that.

But holy crap. This is an awful situation.

eta:
http://settlement.org/ontario/housing/rent-a-home/tenant-rights-and-responsibilities/when-can-my-landlord-evict-me/

http://yourlegalrights.on.ca/common-question/what-reasons-do-landlords-need-to-evict-someone
 

chemgirl

Ideal_Rock
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Telephone, that is totally what I thought. I assumed you could evict if the tenants were breaking the law. That makes sense to me.

I'm getting some of my info from the local newspaper. There was an article about the house with the door ripped off and apparently the landlords were working with police and wanted to board the place up. Apparently they weren't allowed to evict. The neighbors had video of the 50 plus people coming and going on a regular basis (using neighboring yards to avoid being seen on the street) and still nothing happened. The police were quoted saying it was a frustrating situation, but not much they could do. That part seems crazy to me because you would think they could find a load of things to charge them for if they tried.

The newspaper seems pretty accurate based on what we've been experiencing. It was a bit of an expose about this alternative church and their priests and how little the city will do about it.
 

chemgirl

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Azstonie, thanks! I hadn't thought of going to the church to speak with them. They label themselves an "alternative" church and the whole thing seems pretty off to me. I'll wait until DH is here so I have some backup.

I know that the association can eventually sue owners for breaking rules, so I am going to propose this at the general meeting. They probably won't care, but it will be something else to annoy them and maybe get the tenants out.
 

telephone89

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Yeah, I read a bit more and it's based on some sort of board - so there has to be a hearing, and the board decides when that is and what to do. So frustrating!
 

blackprophet

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I work for a municipality in the GTA area.

Call your City Councillor. Get your neighbours to call and email your councillor. They are a very good ally to have in this situation.

You are right, trying to evict is pretty much impossible if they are paying. The board is sympathetic to renters, especially if it is their first time in front of the board. And the land lord is the one who would have to go in front of the board.

So really the landlord is the one you have to get to take action. Your councillor and the HOA can help with this.
 

chemgirl

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Thanks Blackprophet! I will get on that and also speak to my neighbors about it.

Update: the HOA payed a cleaning company to get rid of the junk in their yard and now it's sitting in a bin out front. Landlords will be charged for the cleaning service. That should keep it looking ok for all of five minutes.

At least stuff is happening, although having someone else clean their mess probably isn't the best lesson to be teaching them.
 

monarch64

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Chemgirl, glad there has been a tiny bit of progress. That's a tough situation and I do not envy you! Let us know what happens as time goes by, please. I am interested in the outcome here partly for your sake but also because I want to find out more about this alternative church and what their resolution will be, as well as the city's.
 

kenny

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So, do you get a nice discount?
 

Rockinruby

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chemgirl|1446673491|3945774 said:
Thanks Blackprophet! I will get on that and also speak to my neighbors about it.

Update: the HOA payed a cleaning company to get rid of the junk in their yard and now it's sitting in a bin out front. Landlords will be charged for the cleaning service. That should keep it looking ok for all of five minutes.

At least stuff is happening, although having someone else clean their mess probably isn't the best lesson to be teaching them.

Definitely a step in the right direction! :wavey:
 

random_thought

Brilliant_Rock
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kenny|1446694027|3945889 said:
So, do you get a nice discount?

bahahhaha! Sorry this cracked me up :lol:
 

chemgirl

Ideal_Rock
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Sep 16, 2009
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kenny|1446694027|3945889 said:
So, do you get a nice discount?

Hmmmm having a party next weekend, should stock up!
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
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random_thought|1446741487|3946024 said:
kenny|1446694027|3945889 said:
So, do you get a nice discount?

bahahhaha! Sorry this cracked me up :lol:


Cracked you up? :clap:
 

random_thought

Brilliant_Rock
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Haha, almost put that as a pun intended :bigsmile:
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Well I guess that's a pretty good place to hide drugs.
 
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