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Vigilantes root out rooftop camps on Garnet

Ladder behind the 7-Eleven was the clue

"Sanitary conditions are pretty bad."
"Sanitary conditions are pretty bad."

Residents and business owners in Pacific Beach have taken it upon themselves to help tackle the problem of rooftop encampments.

Vacant Garnet building. "We found stashed belongings – but no people – on top of another building by using the drone.”

“We get lots of backlash,” one member who wished to remain anonymous told me. “We are a large group of PB Neighborhood Watch & Crime Watch residents and business owners. We have high thefts in our area and are always looking for stashed or stolen property… our focus really is to get Letter of Agency/ trespass authorization forms for the businesses having this issue.”

"Another location received reports of a mattress on the rooftop."

"Tom" shared images he took after he was given access to the rooftop at 7-Eleven at Garnet Ave. and Pendleton (four blocks east of Lamont).

“One of the members witnessed people climbing up the ladder behind this 7-Eleven,” he explained. “The following day I spoke with the employees and property manager. They gave me access to the rooftop and that’s when I discovered the encampment. The sanitary conditions are pretty bad as you can see those are two big cups of urine next to the guy sleeping… police were contacted, the property manager was notified and a [Letter of Agency] form is being filled out.”

When asked how they planned on checking all the rooftops, he explained the obvious solution.

“We’re currently looking for other locations – successfully – by drone. We discovered more stashed items on top of the vacant Radio Shack, another location received reports of a mattress on the rooftop, we are currently investigating that too, as well as two more reports of roof campers along Garnet, plus, this morning, (12/15/18) we found stashed belongings – but no people – on top of another building by using the drone.”

I spoke with the manager of the 7-Eleven on Garnet Ave, who confirmed the incident.

“The police came this morning,” Martel told us on December 15, “But they didn’t catch anyone, no one was up there today but said they’ll come back if we find anyone up there again.”

A Letter of Agency form allows the San Diego Police Department to act as the agent for the owner of private property to enforce laws.

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"Sanitary conditions are pretty bad."
"Sanitary conditions are pretty bad."

Residents and business owners in Pacific Beach have taken it upon themselves to help tackle the problem of rooftop encampments.

Vacant Garnet building. "We found stashed belongings – but no people – on top of another building by using the drone.”

“We get lots of backlash,” one member who wished to remain anonymous told me. “We are a large group of PB Neighborhood Watch & Crime Watch residents and business owners. We have high thefts in our area and are always looking for stashed or stolen property… our focus really is to get Letter of Agency/ trespass authorization forms for the businesses having this issue.”

"Another location received reports of a mattress on the rooftop."

"Tom" shared images he took after he was given access to the rooftop at 7-Eleven at Garnet Ave. and Pendleton (four blocks east of Lamont).

“One of the members witnessed people climbing up the ladder behind this 7-Eleven,” he explained. “The following day I spoke with the employees and property manager. They gave me access to the rooftop and that’s when I discovered the encampment. The sanitary conditions are pretty bad as you can see those are two big cups of urine next to the guy sleeping… police were contacted, the property manager was notified and a [Letter of Agency] form is being filled out.”

When asked how they planned on checking all the rooftops, he explained the obvious solution.

“We’re currently looking for other locations – successfully – by drone. We discovered more stashed items on top of the vacant Radio Shack, another location received reports of a mattress on the rooftop, we are currently investigating that too, as well as two more reports of roof campers along Garnet, plus, this morning, (12/15/18) we found stashed belongings – but no people – on top of another building by using the drone.”

I spoke with the manager of the 7-Eleven on Garnet Ave, who confirmed the incident.

“The police came this morning,” Martel told us on December 15, “But they didn’t catch anyone, no one was up there today but said they’ll come back if we find anyone up there again.”

A Letter of Agency form allows the San Diego Police Department to act as the agent for the owner of private property to enforce laws.

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Comments
7

Now the homeless problem is directly affecting the money, "help, help Mayor, we need your political help." Watch thinning hairman step in with another short term political answer rather than policy that would not only mitigate the problems with homelessness but a set of solutions to stop the problems at their roots. Oh, but wait, first San Diego must have another Veterans Day parade before helping anyone but the DOD. The problems associated with the homeless are NEVER going away from this city because it's all about the money and military community not anyone else. GOODNIGHT IRENE

Dec. 17, 2018

Anyone who thinks the homeless have a "right" to squat on a rooftop is a complete idiot. I'm sure if they did, and took a tumble off the roof or even off the ladder, they'd be running to some personal injury lawyer to cash in. They should also be banned from begging at medians in the street, too, as it is annoying at best and unsafe at worst. Stop giving them money and they won't have any incentive to beg, perhaps they will get help instead.

Dec. 17, 2018

i am sure that if the human trash living on a roof started a fire the scumbag lawyers would rush to sue the owner for allowing them on the roof.

Dec. 19, 2018

This is such an ignorant statement. What will they do if not beg? They don't have enough money to get good clothes for a job interview, nor ready accessibility to take a shower once they actually start working. They need to eat. Do you want them to steal? Imma keep handing out my money. While I like occasionally ditching the house to walk across the state or something, more people prefer to have a roof over their head, and I'll do all I can to help.

Dec. 19, 2018

I would think a property owner would have the right to use a drone w/camera to check out his own property.

I take it you would not use a home security camera to capture images of thieves who might break into your home?

If the folks living on the rooftops would clean up after themselves and dispose of their own...uh, well, left behinds, it might not cause as much of an outcry.

Dec. 18, 2018

You'd think the free-market folks and the AirBnB peeps would be all over this new market, disrupting housing for the betterment of all society, huh? But no? They don't want people living on roofs? What about being able to control your private property the way you see fit? No. Hmmm. I see some inconsistencies.

Dec. 18, 2018

I swear, Americans are getting so weak. Is this what we have to do to feel good about ourselves? Pick on people who've already lost everything and are just trying to get by? Then, we blame them! Like they're the problem! No, there's nothing wrong with the system. Nothing wrong with the people who pass them on the streets and scoff instead of helping. Americans don't care about solutions. We care about whining, about playing the victim and spitting on the weak to validate ourselves.

Man up. These people need help. If you want them to move, give them somewhere that they can actually go. Get rid of the crap, discriminating shelters. Give back public use of public parks, including free camping/sleeping.

Money means nothing when compared to the value of life. The value of happiness. Do you guys never talk to these people? Can you not empathize? Do you not have the power to expand yourselves beyond money and society and into the realm of humanity? Emotion? Compassion? Kindess?

This could happen to any of us. So, let's stop acting like we're perfect little whatevers, and actually do something to help!

Dec. 19, 2018

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