Abandoned school plaguing neighbors with problems

DETROIT (WXYZ) - Spend five minutes in the 4100 block of Eastlawn and those who live there will tell you all about their unwelcome neighbor--an abandoned school.

 "This is ridiculous,"  said resident Eric Jackson.

7 Action News spent Thursday outside of the old Hosmar Elementary on Detroit's east side. The weeds on the property appeared at least 4-feet high.

According to neighbors, people from other parts of town had been using the yard to dump their trash and those who live near the abandoned school have to wait until bulk day for the mess to be removed.

"If a kid was walking and a car came down the street, could you see them?  No… look at how bad the grass is,"  Jackson said Thursday morning.

After speaking to upset residents on Thursday, within 24 hours, the grass that neighbors say hadn't been touched all summer, was mysteriously mowed.

No one knows who did it.

Neighbors tell us they try to cut as much of surrounding vacant properties as they can.

"We do the best we can," said resident Sheddrie Jones.  "As you can see we go from corner to corner in the front but we can't maintain these fields.  We try but they tear our lawnmowers up."

For those who live in the area, there is another problem: scrappers.

"If you sit here you will see somebody coming out of here with something," said Jackson.

Within minutes, 7 Action News spotted someone inside the abandoned building trying to remove something and making a lot of noise.

After placing a 911 call, the suspect escaped out of another entrance.

Neighbors are worried about the stability of the building because kids like to play basketball inside.

"Who lets their kids go in there and play basketball? But the kids don't know any better," said Jackson.  "This is like a big playground to them… a big clubhouse."

Worried residents reached out to 7 Action News hoping someone will help them board up or even demolish the eyesore.

"I appreciate if channel 7 would do something, help us out," said Jackson.  "Or Dave Bing, some of them senators up there.  You want us to vote for you…  do something."

"It would make me feel a lot better because we stay up half the night looking out the windows and things trying to see what's moving through the neighborhoods. Trying to keep our eye for each other," said Jones.

The city's ombudsman's office told 7 Action News they plan on sending someone to inspect the building within the week.

A representative with the mayor's office said they are looking into the weeds on the nearby vacant property.

Several calls were placed to Detroit public schools. The 7 Action News team is still waiting for them to be returned.

Stay with WXYZ.com  for more information on this developing story.

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