NEW ORLEANS -- A short row of connected townhouses is the focus of neighborhood anger on a New Orleans street where other home owners take pride in what they did to bring their neighborhood back after Katrina.
'I'm very angry,' said one neighbor. 'Every time we come outside, this is what we have to look at. The property value goes down, and at night it is dark back here, so we don't know if somebody is hiding in the bushes, hiding in the abandoned houses, waiting for you to leave to break into your homes. ... We can't get help from the city.'
'I've been down there over and over, and they're saying that it is not listed,' complained property owner Trina Brown-Simmons. 'They didn't know, nobody's giving reports where it has been reported, but it is getting lost in the system.'
Brown-Simmons owns the one at the end, the only one that can be lived in, but says every year, her tenants move out.
'A bad problem. I cannot keep anyone in the home, because of the simple fact that they are scared of burglaries, and people are breaking in, taking everything out.'
The one next to her is a long, empty, Road Home property that has been broken into, and the thieves knocked holes in the wall to get into and strip the third unit of anything valuable.
The fourth unit is a wreck that is beginning to collapse, and has termite damage. The front and back yards are heavily overgrown.
I'm contacting officials at City Hall, asking them to send inspectors out, take a look at these structures, see what needs to be done to make them secure. and make sure that gets done.
As for this one, well, I'm getting in touch with the Road Home Program. There's a nice big lock on the front door, but this is the back door, so I'm asking them to come out there, and make sure this is closed up solidly.
A year ago, Trina tried living there, but it was too scary.
'I moved in for two days, and I moved out. I could not sleep, I was up all night.'