• Story alerts
  • Letter to Editor
  • Pin it

“They fear that they won’t be safe walking out of their apartment or going to the grocery store, so they keep their mouths shut.”

The three say that they respect the Lighthouse and what the facility does for parolees and they hope the men are able to turn their lives around, but they say intentions don’t have anything to do with it.

“They do have a mission, and it seems to be effective,” says Booth. “I’ve never seen a cop there taking them away, but there’s got to be a balance. I should think that would be part of their message besides staying sober: don’t be a loud, sober jerk.”

Interrupts Anna, “What is their therapy based on? If that’s their respect for the neighborhood, what are they teaching these guys? Is that how they are going to go back into society?”

Anna has complained to Potiker’s management and placed calls to the police department. She has also called the Lighthouse staff and Centre City Development Corporation, but nothing has been done and the noise continues.

“Pleas for help have gone unanswered,” says Anna. “The elderly, frail, and fearful are expected to sign complaints with the police.”

“I’ve stuck my head out of the window,” says Booth, “and yelled at them to keep it down, but they yell right back at me using that foul language. ‘Ah, shut up, old man,’ they say.”

While the Potiker residents feel they are being ignored, this correspondent didn’t fare much better when seeking information about noise complaints. “At this time I am going to refer you to the City to answer any questions that you may have on our facility,” wrote the director of the Lighthouse, Laura Garcia, in a May 21 email. “I am not going to enter into any sort of verbal banter with parties unknown. We follow a good neighbor policy, as we are an established business for the last ten years.”

This correspondent also attempted to contact Paul Downey, the president and chief executive officer for Senior Community Centers, the organization that owns Potiker Family Senior Residence, but Downey did not respond.

“We feel that [Potiker staff] should stick up for us, but they don’t,” says Anna.

“Who really cares? We are just ‘old people.’”

  • Story alerts
  • Letter to Editor
  • Pin it


incognito July 22, 2010 @ 2:15 p.m.

You can sue them in Small Claims Court because tenants have a right to 'quiet contentment' by law. Furthermore, include the landlord in the claim as a defendent for refusing to take action to protect your right of quiet contentment. I recommend writing an amicable letter to the offending facility asking them to resolve the violation and a separate one asking the landlord to resolve it. you'll need written documentation in Court that you have attempted resolution (send everything Certfied with Return Receipt) thru normal channels. Be sure to state the violation but you don't mention that you intend to sue. Sue for the maximum amount Small Claims Court allows. Only the people with the guts to sign the letters will share when damages are awarded so people will have to step up. Oh, and please don't forget to send me a reward for this valuable legal advice. Good Luck. Ava


sadsenior Aug. 2, 2010 @ 11:13 a.m.

It is sad to reach a time in ones life when one should have quiet enjoyment and all the seniors get at this facility is foul language and staff that do not care. They put on a good front when donors come, to show all is well. They interview new residents who have yet to see the truth to show how wonderful the place is. They even have a residents board that is ineffective....they to bow to the management or Senior Community Center (Paul Downey)....The Potiker is a front for the people running the place to get high salaries in nice air conditioned offices with underground parking. While the seniors have to compete with the Padres fans for street parking and walk long distances to find a space...those who are lucky enough to still have a car. The able bodied employees get the underground parking. The only rooms that are well airconditioned are the offices, halls and empty meeting rooms while the residents are trapped in their sweltering little rooms with one window. No circulation ....can't open their doors do to the theft etc. Also the halls smell like ashtrays, urine etc. and the smokers are millitant about their rights. There is no place for nonsmokers to go...The roof patio always has a band of smokers and their lovely little garden is also a hangout for smokers both staff and residents. The smoke just floats in to the rooms above. All the nonsmokers suffer from second hand smoke. It is everywhere and there is nowhere to go to get away from it. I have heard non smoking staff are unhappy about the second hand smoke they are subjected to while walking the halls. Complaining is met with retribution and the seniors there are just plain stuck. The other housing in San Diego is many years wait. At Potiker they have smokers on Oxygen...there have been several incidents of ignition. It not only costs the city in sending out fire engines but the rents keep going up because of damage do to fire. The management does not like the fire dept to come and they had had some serious thing happen when they try to put fires out themselves. A 26 minute response for a fire is not accepptable. It is not a safe wonderful place to live as portrayed..... They lie and coverup to the law about goings on ...there have been stabbings and mugging in the building. The staff lie about residents and one in particular has bragged that management will always believe her not a resident. They lie about the rooms and building to prospective residents. The donors never see what is really going on. And the bugs....what a nightmare. I don't even go to visit my friend there anymore because of the bugs let alone the shouting and swearing one has to endure going there from the facility across the street! This is the tip of an iceberg that needs looking at! Glad I knew someone there before my lease ran out and I was tempted by their facade. Good to see someone has tackled at least one part of the residents misery. Thank you...


Gina Larson Aug. 5, 2010 @ 7:19 a.m.

Incognito: I learned a lot from your post. I wanta thank you for sharing. I am dealing with sort of the same legal issue, (bad management, unethical employees) at an apartment complex in San Diego. Case-wise the people at Potiker would seem to have a lot of things on their side. They just need to get a move on and start the legal process.

They should use digital recordings of statements made in public, which I believe would be admissable in court. I've been using an Olympus digital voice recorder. If you're creative it's very easy to hide. It's so small that sometimes no one notices it in your hand, although on a rare occasion a sharp individual will spot it. No matter, you can tape it to your body underneath light clothing.

I use an Olympus (the VN-960) that's an absolute wonder in that it has been super reliable over the years and has never given me any trouble despite being used on a daily basis. Olympus discontinued the VN-960. Recordings are a great way to catch unethical business people in the act of violating the law. I called Olympus a few days ago to find an equivalent model because like a spare tire for your car back ups are crucial when you're on the lower bottom of the totem pole and you're gathering evidence against someone with mucho power who's perched at the top of the totem pole. And when you're seriously outnumbered. And when you're dealing with people who have power who think they're above the law, laws written by lawmakers for a good reason.

The Olympus VN-6200 is the equivalent model to my VN-960. I don't work for Olympus. But like those senior citizens I'm in a war that I really don't want to fight but have no choice in that I must fight. And when you're at war you need the best tools to get the job done especially when the balance of power between the two combatants is grossly uneven. And thus I hope they're reading this, I hope I helped them in their cause and I hope I saved them some time in searching for the right tool in that big haystack a.k.a. the Internet.

I was reading a review at Amazon that was written by a cop. He was reviewing an Olympus digital voice recorder he had purchased. He said that he turns it on at the beginning of his shift and then tucks it in his pocket. He then turns it off at the end of his shift. That's a smart thing to do considering the great propensity supposed honest people have for lying at the drop of a dime. And I, based on my experience, include in that category those that are inveterate church goers who go to Sunday school once a week to be schooled on issues that pertain to morality and honesty, but yet don't appear to put into practice what their spiritual leader teaches them.

If the senior citizens at Potiker can find a good, competent, reasonable judge then it would appear that they'd have a good case that they just might win. I wish them well. I hope they take action. And I hope they win.


Sign in to comment

Win a $25 Gift Card to
The Broken Yolk Cafe

Join our newsletter list

Each newsletter subscription means another chance to win!