Construction Debris, Trash and Goats Lead to Home's Nuisance Order

Construction Debris, Trash and Goats Lead to Home's Nuisance Order

The Shelby County District Attorney just declared a family property in Frayser a nuisance.
MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - It's not your typical backyard. The Shelby County District Attorney just declared a family property in Frayser a nuisance. Investigators say it's a massive illegal dump site, complete with trash, huge piles of construction debris, and even goats.

One neighbor, who asked not to be identified, says when she moved into her home 11 years ago, she didn't think she was buying a house across the street from a dump. "It's their house, that's true, but it's still our neighborhood," she says, "I don't want to have to see it, I don't know what they're dumping back there."

District Attorney Amy Weirich says the 18 month investigation has lead to disturbing results. She says, "This is a horrific, horrific site that, of course, brings down this little corner of Shelby County but impacts everybody who lives in Shelby County."

Tennessee State Assistant Attorney General Troy McPeak says, "I've been doing environmental work since 1999 and I have great concern that we don't know what all is in there."

According to police, Larry Brunson, Mable Sutton and Debra Nesbit each charged people to dump refuse in illegal dump sites established on their property. Oneal Payne and Warren Payne were charged for using the illegal landfills. In April, Warren Payne received a $425,000 demolition contract with the City of Memphis, one of many on his file. Memphis Mayor A C Wharton promises he won't be hired again, "Here we are paying somebody to clean up the city and they stand accused now of ruining another section of the city."

It costs the county more than $160 an hour to clean up illegal dump sites. This is a huge property, and the longer it sat, the more it built up. Neighbors say "they should have done that a long time ago."

Currently the five are indicted on felony charges of vandalism; if convicted, they face a minimum eight year prison sentence. The State is working to strengthen penalties against those who participate in illegal dumping. They will address that when the legislature reconvenes.
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