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Pasadena officials board up suspected squatter home

September 16, 2012 | 10:37 am

Pasadena squatter homePasadena police and code enforcement officials boarded up a 1918 Craftsman-style home that had become a crash pad for squatters after six months of complaints from the neighborhood.

Danielle Kurz, who lives next door to the foreclosed home at 405 N. Oakland Ave., told the Pasadena City Council on Monday that several people had been living in squalor on the property. A day later, city code enforcement officers issued violation notices at the home, according to Code Compliance Manager Jon Pollard.

By Wednesday, police and code enforcement officers locked the doors and hammered sheets of plywood over broken windows, the Pasadena Sun reported.

A pregnant woman and at least five men had been sleeping in the two-story, five-bedroom home at various times over the past six months, Kurz said.

Rooms inside the house were cluttered with clothes, papers, damaged furniture, food waste, cigarette butts, lighters and empty beer bottles. There were also jars of baby food, a pair of child-size shoes and a used glass pipe.

“It's a mess, but we've seen worse,” said Pasadena police Sgt. Jason Clawson, a member of the city's Community Resources Against Substandard Housing team, which investigates neglected properties.

Kurz, who moved to Pasadena in June 2011, said she had called police about activity at the house more than a dozen times this year. Squatters frequented the property so often that one cut away hedges for easier access over a metal fence, she said.

Property records state the house is owned by Colorado-based Aurora Loan Services. In July 2012 Aurora's assets were acquired by Nationstar Mortgage, a Texas-based loan servicing firm.

“It's a really sad story, Kurz said. "I think it [would be] better to keep the families there and let them pay something little by little rather than have the mess we have now."


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— Joe Piasecki, Times Community News

Photo: Pasadena resident Danielle Kurz walks through a suspected squatter house. Credit: Raul Roa / Times Community News