Archive for Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Problem house on N.Y. demolished

A worker for R.D. Johnson Excavating Co. of Lawrence demolishes the house at 1200 N.Y. Neighbors bought the house, which was in disrepair and was the site of frequent police visits.

A worker for R.D. Johnson Excavating Co. of Lawrence demolishes the house at 1200 N.Y. Neighbors bought the house, which was in disrepair and was the site of frequent police visits.

December 5, 2007


East Lawrence problem house not a problem anymore

The East Lawrence house with a history of alleged criminal activity comes crashing down. Neighbors say it's the site of frequent drug deals and substandard living conditions. But now, the source of all this strife is gone for good. Enlarge video

Despite the frigid temperatures Wednesday morning, neighbors crowded together on an East Lawrence sidewalk, eyes fixed on a house they usually avoid.

"People would not let their children pass by, understandably," said Cindy Suenram, who lives next door to the house with her husband, Arch Naramore. "Friends would come to our home and say they felt intimidated. You would walk by and not look or talk."

During the past two years, neighbors called police to the property at 1200 and 1202 N.Y. more than 30 times. The house contained two apartments.

The property is known to have been the address for Louis G. Galloway, a Lawrence man who earlier this year was convicted of breaking into an apartment and beating the resident. It also was the residence of Michael Parker, a Lawrence man who was convicted in September of making bomb threats against local schools.

Naramore and Suenram believe it was the site of drug use and dealing.

Although it may not sound like an attractive property acquisition, the couple jumped at the chance to buy the building when it went to auction in September. Their bid won, and they decided to tear it down.

"It's hard to tear down someone's home, but this one was in such bad, bad shape," Suenram said.

She and Naramore have no immediate plans for the property. They may eventually build a new home or addition there but said they wanted to finish the demolition as soon as possible.

And they weren't the only ones who braved the cold conditions to say goodbye to the house.

"This is just the coolest thing I've ever seen. I really wanted to see it," said Kistie Patch, who owns the home across the street.

The neighbors watched as a backhoe pulled apart the building. It took only an hour to erase the years of neglect.

"It was real run down and falling apart. The foundation had collapsed, and it was falling inside," Naramore said. "Termites had eaten up all the studs on a lot of the building, and it was just nasty inside. There's so much trash and stuff."


Michael Capra 10 years, 3 months ago

that is a trackhoe and as for that hat she is hot

rumor_man 10 years, 3 months ago

One house down....5 to go....and the Fritzel family has a new site for another hotel.

RomanNose 10 years, 3 months ago

Hey, it isn't the bulldozer's fault. It's just doing its job.

PatKirk 10 years, 3 months ago

Just for the record, that's not her hair. It's a hat. And she looks fine.

rooga 10 years, 3 months ago

THANKYOU!!! THANKYOU!!!!! THANKYOU!!!!! THANKYOU!!!!!! THANKYOU!!!!!!! Finally!!! I have lived across the street from that crack house for 5 years and it was always a problem. People would always comment on that place! I complained to the LPD about it all the time and told them that it was a crack house, but of course the LPD never did anything about it! Finally the neighbors in this area did something about it! I would of done the same thing but Im just a college student and certainly do not have the funds to buy and destroy a house! THANKYOU for destroying that place! I can finally sleep at night knowing that our heighborhood is alot safer!!!

gkwhdw 10 years, 3 months ago

What if the lady's hair did come out of the bottle? Wait till you or your wife need to feel younger and try to take care of yourself. What does her hair got to do with the demolition anyway. Mind your own business till you can afford to buy property just to get rid of a problem. Doesn't sound like you're smart enough to even know the difference between hair and a winter cap.DUHHHH!

Sigmund 10 years, 3 months ago

I wonder how she got a permit to tear it down? Usually the City frowns on tearing down properties that are on the tax roles as it reduces the value and the tax owed.Especially since it was not the house that was the problem, but the residents.

BigPrune 10 years, 3 months ago

I wonder if that lady's hair color comes in a bottle? A salon quality hair conditioner works wonders on the frizzies.

CrazyDiamond 10 years, 3 months ago

Bravo! That's what I'm talking about! Someone taking the initiative to solve a problem. We could use more people like Naramore & Suneram. Did they spend all their time complaining about city commissioners, architects, democrats & republicans, roundabouts and wetlands etc... Dosen't look that way. Looks like they got down and took care of a problem the best way they knew how. Congratulations to them!

Scott Tichenor 10 years, 3 months ago

That's the way you get things done in East Lawrence. You do it yourself the hard way. Now if we could just repeat this process for all of Bonita Yoder's little slum houses in the neighborhood we'd be making real progress.

crazyleaflady 10 years, 3 months ago

Who used to own the house? Douglas County online already has the new owners listed. I'd be interested to know which slumlord needs an extra flaming bag of dog poo for Christmas this year as a thank you for all of the years of loving care.

revshackleford 10 years, 3 months ago

"The previous owner was a local minister"

"Was" or "is"? Is the former owner deceased and that's why the property was auctioned? I'm not so much nosey about who the former owner was as I am curious why the LJW reporter didn't print his or her name in the story. I haven't had a journalism class in awhile but that fact seems relevant given the history of the house.

somebodynew 10 years, 3 months ago

rev - probably didn't print the name of the former owner because he is a city employee in a very good job. I think other stories have mentioned his name though.

cms 10 years, 3 months ago

Awesome story. The power of communicating and acting neighbors!

Write2Know 10 years, 3 months ago

I'm surprised with the "history" of the house that the historical preservation society didn't try to step in and stop the demolition.

Scott Tichenor 10 years, 3 months ago

From the LJW online, posted August 30, 2007 by Chad Lawhorn:

For the second time in a year, the city employee responsible for mediating landlord-tenant disputes is being prosecuted in Municipal Court for owning slumlord-quality rental properties.

City inspectors confirmed that they have turned over to Municipal Court a housing code violation case against Paul Winn, a specialist in the city's Human Relations Department. The case alleges that Winn allowed a rental unit he owns at 1200 N.Y. to fall into such disrepair that it no longer meets the city's minimum housing codes.

Read it:

Fatty_McButterpants 10 years, 3 months ago

It's always nice to see these old, crappy houses torn down.

As for the hair comments - obviously, the first comment was meant tongue-in-cheek, so don't get so worked up about it.

institches 10 years, 3 months ago

KLWN said the previous owner is Paul WInn AND he got slapped with a big fine

naturalist 10 years, 3 months ago

Thank you Cindy and Arch--well done! It's up to us to take back the night and you have set a great example. I think your neighbors will appreciate it and it's an inspiration to others.

ImTooOldForThis 10 years, 3 months ago

""This is just the coolest thing I've ever seen. I really wanted to see it," said Kistie Patch, who owns the home across the street."

She must not get out much.

KU_Dude 10 years, 3 months ago

Is this a good place for spot zoning Cool?

broddie 10 years, 3 months ago

The house wasn't always necessarily a crack house. In the spring of 1987, the storefront facing N.Y. was the site of the very short-lived East Lawrence Community Grocery. I think it was a beauty salon at one time.

"Bad" houses come and go. Back in the mid-late 90's, there were two real crack houses in the middle of the east side of the 1100 block of Connecticut. It was so bad that the City put a streetlight up in front of the houses so that people couldn't stand around in the dark making drug deals.

In the case of 1200 N.Y, it wasn't a very well-built structure to begin with; tearing it down made sense.

BigPrune 10 years, 3 months ago

For the record, the hair comment above was a joke. Don't take life so seriously.

But seriously, didn't people hide in that house during William Quantrill's raid?

BrianR 10 years, 3 months ago

Ok, it's time to make an eye appointment. I looked at this headline and was perplexed because I couldn't for the life of me understand why a problem horse was newsworthy.

justthefacts 10 years, 3 months ago

HA KU Dude I was wondering the same exact thing!! LOL

pace 10 years, 3 months ago

I like pictures of wrecking, I like pictures of construction. I find both interesting and newsworthy. An empty lot can be a good neighbor. If you want to buy your neighbors house and wreck it, make decent offer. If you want to buy my house and wreck it, make me a decent offer, I think my house should be wrecked. I am more upside down on maintenance cost versus value every year. I hate slab homes.

willybill 10 years, 3 months ago

You should see her mothers hair!!!!! actually her 2 older sisters hair is much worst

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