An Inglewood home has been boarded up after numerous complaints of suspicious activity from citizens in the area at the home for nearly four years.
On Nov. 16th the Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods (SCAN) Unit obtained a Community Safety Order (CSO) for the home, located at 51 Ibbotson Cl., which has been ordered closed for 90 days, effective yesterday.
“The closure on this property is a result of a four-year investigation that started in 2009,” said SCAN Manager Billy Kerr, adding the property owner lived at the residence. “There was lots of activity – drug trafficking, comings and goings – and we responded to the concerns of the neighbourhood and this is what our investigation has led to.
“Over the past four years we’ve had numerous complaints from a number of citizens in the area. We had an unsuccessful Safety Community Order attempt on this house in 2009.”
SCAN began investigating the property after receiving public complaints about suspected drug-related activity at the home. During the investigation, SCAN attempted to resolve the matter informally with the property owner, but the alleged activity continued. SCAN then took steps to obtain a CSO, which was eventually granted by the Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench on Nov. 16.
“We’ve had an informal talk with the property owner as well as two warning letters.”
During the 90-day closure period, which took effect at noon Dec. 4, the owner had to vacate the house and the property was secured, including the installation of a fence around the perimeter. Any and all tenancy agreements or leases of any tenant of the property were terminated as of the closure date.
The CSO will remain in effect until Nov. 16, 2013, unless the title of the property is transferred to a third party purchaser before that time.
“The closure period is in effect until March 4 at noon but the CSO will remain in place for a year. That means the property owner has to abide by the rules and make sure criminal activity doesn’t create any more problems in the community.”
Throughout the investigation, SCAN members worked closely with the Red Deer City RCMP. This property has presented an ongoing problem for police, said Kerr.
While the police deal with criminal complaints against people, SCAN investigators use civil legislation to target problem properties around the province used for illegal purposes such as prostitution, drug use and drug trafficking and gang activity.
“Properties like this have a significant impact on residents’ ability to feel safe and enjoy their community,” said Kerr. “We are very pleased to have played a role in addressing the problems associated with this house for the benefit of the neighbourhood.”
This is the second time SCAN has shut down a property in Red Deer since the Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods Act was introduced in Alberta in 2007.
Red Deerians who suspect a property in their neighbourhood is being used for illegal activity should contact SCAN toll-free at 1-866-960-SCAN (7226) or online at www.scan.alberta.ca. All complaints are confidential. Residents are reminded never to investigate suspected problem properties on their own.
SCAN is an ALERT team established and funded by the government of Alberta to bring together the province’s most sophisticated law enforcement resources to tackle serious and organized crime. Over 400 municipal police, RCMP and sheriffs work for ALERT.