Action Report: Collapsing house next door leaves neighbor in tears

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wwltv.com

Posted on February 5, 2014 at 7:54 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 5 at 8:00 PM

Bill Capo / Eyewitness News
Email: bcapo@wwltv.com | Twitter: @billcapo

NEW ORLEANS -- Juliette Gendricks is so proud of her home, but can't enjoy it because the two-story structure next door is in such bad shape it is collapsing.

The stress reduced her to tears.

"I want to go," she cried. "I can't do it any more, I can't."

The roof is full of holes, the side walls are falling, the main structural boards have been heavily damaged by termites.

Juliette has been asking the city and the owner for help for years, but when a section fell before dawn, she was badly frightened.

"Very anxious," Juliette said. "All day long, especially at night. I have insomnia, I don't sleep, I can't sleep, because look at the building. I'm waiting to be buried alive."

City records show a 2012 sheriff's sale was cancelled, then it was inspected again a year ago, with nine violations found.

"I have nails in the driveway, I can't park in my driveway," said Juliette. "Look where my car is parked. I have a driveway and cannot park in my driveway. ... I'm scared it's going to fall on my car."

I contacted City Hall and asked them to take action quickly. The owner, meanwhile, called me and told me he has been trying for some time to get a demolition permit.

Well, they all met at a hearing, and look at the result.

It only took part of the day for the owner's demolition crew to tear down the failing structure, and when they arrived, it was thrilling for Juliette.

"It means a big relief," szhe said with a laugh. "I feel like all the pressure is off my shoulders, and I can live in my house without being in a prison. It feels good."

 

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