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'We don't deserve to live around trash': Garbage piles overwhelm east side apartment complex

Posted at 10:47 PM, Oct 06, 2021

INDIANAPOLIS — Residents at an apartment complex on Indy's east side are overwhelmed by the amount of uncollected trash beginning to pile up.

"Help. Help. Help us, anybody! Please help us," said Dana Adams-Jones, a nine-year tenant at the Washington Pointe Apartments.

Adams-Jones is concerned about her health and safety as piles of trash lie on the ground next to overflowing dumpsters.

"We don't deserve to live around trash, to breathe in trash; That's nothing but germs. We have children out here," she said.

On Wednesday, WRTV watched people struggle to get their trash into the already full dumpster and school children get on and off the bus in the same area as the mounds of trash.

"They're getting off the bus in trash and this is ridiculous," Adams-Jones said.

On Sept. 28, the Marion County Public Health Department inspected the property and issued three violations for the trash.

The health department said it received an additional complaint on Monday.

The property has until Oct. 12 to clean the mess up or it can be issued a fine or taken to court.

WRTV went to the front office looking for answers as to what's going on with the trash. We were told the manager was gone for the day, but the property was in the process of cleaning the waste up.

"Who wants to look at that? Who wants to smell that? It's so unsanitary and unsafe," Mirtala Cooley said.

Cooley told WRTV on Sunday she's been begging the complex to do something about this and maintenance issues inside her apartment.

On Wednesday, she said nothing has changed. Raccoons, flies and rats still surround the dumpster.

"It's incredibly frustrating. It's disgusting for what we pay for these apartments," she said. "Yes, they are income-based, but still, nobody should have to live like this. I would not want my worst enemy to live like this."

WRTV reached out to Kittle Properties which oversees Washington Pointe Apartments. A spokesperson sent the following statement to WRTV Thursday:

We appreciate the concerns of our residents and have been working on this situation. Since Monday, we have had the trash compactor service working on the issue and they have already taken away 3 loads. Obviously more needs to be done and after contacting several trash services, we were able to find one to come out on Monday, possibly sooner if they have cancellations.

We realize that this is not the ideal situation for our residents and we are working to find solutions. We are experiencing staffing issues like so many other companies right now. Our company currently has open positions, including some at this property, which equate to 15% of our workforce. When you add that to the shortages experienced by so many of our vendors, the results can be challenging. We appreciate our team members who are persisting through these, and our residents who call our community home.

Laurren Brown, Manager of Corporate Communications for Kittle Property Group, Inc

If the trash at the apartment complex is not cleaned up by Oct. 12, the health department said it can enter the property to correct the violation. The property would have to foot the bill.

WRTV will keep track of what happens and let you know if it's picked up in time.