Neighbors Use Halloween Decorations To Draw Attention To Condition Of Vacant House

Community Decorates To Get Tree Removed

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- The night dedicated ghosts, jack-o'-lanterns and spooky fun has come and gone. But you'd never know it by the looks of a fully-decorated house on Ebert Street in Winston-Salem.

"I'm going to leave the stuff up as long as it's necessary until something is done," said neighbor George Lemons.

Lemons teamed up with his neighbor, Sue Mueller, to decorate a vacant house for Halloween. They say the house has had a tree laying on top of it since July. They put up a sign next to the tree that says, "I'm tired of being here."

"The tree is a massive eye sore, there's no doubt about that whatsoever," Mueller said. "And we're hoping this shows the city that they need to do something about it."

The pair filed complaints with the city of Winston-Salem, which opened a case against whomever owns the property for seven city code violations.

However, the city has run into a problem. The original owner of the house died in 2012 and the city hasn't been able to find the person now in charge of the house.

"We have to notify them (the current owner) and give them the opportunity to address the problem," said Community Development Director, Ritchie Brooks.

He said the city is actively searching for the current owner so they can move forward with the case. According to Brooks, the current owner will be responsible for making repairs on the house so that it complies with city code because the tree is on their private property.

If you notice downed trees or overgrown grass in your area, you can call the city's main number to report a complaint at 336-727-8000.

Copyright 2017 WFMY


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