Detroit apartment tenants evicted due to poor living conditions

Police tell tenants to leave since owner hasn't fixed problems city calls 'emergency'


DETROIT – The city of Detroit has shut the building down.

The owner will not make the apartments livable, the city says, and police told tenants to leave on Thursday.

A quick walk through the apartments just north of downtown reveals holes in the walls, exposed wiring and community bathrooms which are both shared and shameful.

Moreover, the Department of Building Safety and Engineering said a dog carcass was found in the basement, plus human and animal waste.

"We don't have nowhere to go," said tenant Vivian Glover. "I don't want to go back on the street. I'm not going back."

But the tenants are not in the building as of Thursday.

John Martin, of DPSE, said the city gave the building owner an emergency order on March 5, but the problems have continued. On Wednesday, notices were posted.

"I think it's better for them not to be in that building than to be in that building because it is a fire trap," Martin said. "

EMS and the Red Cross have helped the newly homeless. Residents were fed and many were taken to shelters. However, they feel they are being treated unfairly.

"It's an outrage that we are getting kicked out on the street with short notice," said tenant Robert Powell.

Among the residents who had to leave is the building manager. He did not comment when asked how the building conditions became so poor.

City records list the owner as Robert Carnick. The March 5 order lists 24 violations. Area shelters were notified before the building was ordered closed.

It could reopen if the problems are fixed.