Binghamton Locks Down Rat-Infested “Living Nightmare” House
A single-family home that had made life miserable for people in a Binghamton neighborhood has been locked down by the city.
Several police officers along with public works and parks department crews were accompanied by city attorneys converged on the house at 314 Prospect Street on February 23. They showed up to serve a preliminary injunction to inform owners that the city intended to go to court to have the property shut down.
Public works employees told WNBF News that several rats scurried away from the home when they arrived to start hauling away garbage.
City Court Judge William Pelella conducted a trial on March 6 to consider the matter. No one showed up on behalf of the property owners.
In his decision, Pelella wrote that the evidence established that the place had been "a living nightmare for residents of Prospect Street." He noted the place was "the center of ongoing criminal activity." He wrote that the constant traffic in and out of the house was "consistent with drug activity and prostitution."
Pelella authorized the closing of the property for up to one year. On Thursday, Mayor Jared Kraham announced the city's lockdown action.
The city sent a warning letter to the property owners last September alerting them that the house had been deemed a "public nuisance." The action was taken days after a man was shot on the porch roof of the house, which is less than two blocks west of Woodrow Wilson Elementary School.