MEAD, Wash. -- Some residents in Mead said they are fed up with a two-and-a-half acre eyesore that has been a magnet for crime, drugs and garbage.
The property is on N. Freya near E. 2nd Ave., right across the street from the Boys and Girls Club and a busy park.
Jerry McDowell, who lives on the property, admits there are code violations but the 77-year-old said criminals have taken over the place, stolen most of his stuff and left the property a mess.
“No, [police] don’t do a lot. I don’t even call [them] most of the time,” said McDowell.
He said he and several residents are trying their best to clean up the area. Their goal has become more difficult now that the area has become a known dumpsite in the Mead area.
“People are using this as a dump site - more than a dump site,” said resident Barbie Barker. “It's flat bed trailers full of garbage and I've went through the garbage and found addresses and names. I've tried to contact the people and say, ‘Hey, you know that you're garbage is getting dumped here?’”
Another neighbor, who didn't want to be indentified for fear of retribution, said McDowell's property has been a magnet for meth labs, a hangout for hoodlums, and an ugly eyesore in an otherwise nice part of Mead.
The neighbor also said he does not think McDowell is really trying to get rid of the garbage.
“The record clearly indicates the long standing drug activity that's occurred there and it appears nothing has been done - and it appears he will do nothing in the future to abate those activities,” the man said.
Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich told KREM 2 News the county has given Jerry McDowell until September to get the property cleaned up. Then it will up to the county commissioners to decide whether to bulldoze the land.
The Sheriff added that his deputies have performed multiple patrols in the area over the past six months and crime has been reduced there.
Residents were invited to air their concerns about crime in the area on Thursday, June 5 at Farwell Elementary at 6:30-8:00 p.m.