Police board up ‘nuisance’ west side apartment complex

NBC4 Investigates

Cops who work the West Side of Columbus are familiar with 563 South Hague.

Over the past two years, officers were called to the rundown apartment building more than 100 times. Crimes ran the gamut, from drugs and prostitution to murder and fugitives on the lam.

City Attorney Zack Klein secured an emergency court order, and Friday morning, the City sent tenants packing and boarded up the building.

NBC 4 Investigator Tom Sussi spoke with a 60-year-old woman, who for the past four years, has called the nine-unit apartment building home. Janice Lanning said drug dealers and gang members ran rampant.

“It’s not safe,” she said.

Columbus Police Sergeant Frederick Brophy told Sussi some of the tenants who lived there were innocent bystanders. Others were not.

“Many of the residents, at least half,  had facilitated or allowed it to happen inside their apartment or inside the property,” Brophy said.

If courts declare the building a public nuisance, it could be shut down for up to one year. The City Attorney’s Office said the building’s owner is working with them to address their concerns.

As for the ten displaced people, like Janice Lanning, the City and agencies like Lifecare Alliance, are helping them move, and find other places to live. Lanning told Sussi she is happy to be leaving 563 South Hague. 

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