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Snakes, skunks, rodents just some of the problems from east side overgrowth

Posted at 4:50 PM, Sep 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-06 09:08:19-04

It’s been a growing problem for more than a decade and longtime residents are fed up with the lack of help from the city of Cleveland.

Our investigators have been looking into the wild overgrowth on the city’s east side along Wayne Drive and it appears the city has known about it for many, many years.

“There’s no telling what’s back there. I know what I’ve seen,” said Early Crawford while looking at the 15-feet tall weeds that are thick and strong. She and her husband Charles have seen many problems with the massive brush.

“My husband killed two snakes right in front of the garage,” said Crawford. “There was one almost at my backdoor!”
There have been snakes, rodents, skunks, even deer living in the overgrowth.  “I feel somebody’s not getting the job done,” said Charles.

The Crawford's showed us letters dating back to 2004 from the city of Cleveland showing city leaders were well aware of the problems. Even two to three years ago, the Crawford's said they had city representatives out examining the issues. The Crawford's are especially concerned about the overgrowth being right next to a daycare. “They have children out in the yard and what have you,” said Early.

What they have and what the neighbors have is not only a continuous overgrowth nuisance, but water problems, too.  “It floods. I’d say to right about here,” said Early as she pointed to an area beyond their garage. At one point they lost a lawn mower because of high water. “Over there it goes up a little further,” she told us while gesturing to her next door neighbor’s yard. They have pictures to prove it.

People all along the block have called like Earlene Hicks.

“We’re all neighbors. We see a light out and we call. We’re trying to keep our community safe…with that overgrowth…it’s just awful,” Hicks said.

With all of this said, no help with the alley way that has been left for residents to deal with.  It’s enough for thoughts of doing something drastic. Early had a conversation with Charles one day. “Just taking gasoline back there and pouring it and burn it out! And he told me I couldn’t do that.”

We have informed the city about this problem, again, and we will stay on top of it.