ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) — A North St. Louis woman is frustrated over what she says is a major eyesore next to her home. She reached out to News 4 for help after she said her neighbor’s lawn is so overgrown, you can no longer see the sidewalk.
“I’m looking at a pure jungle, that’s what I’m looking at,” Annette Emsweller said.
Weeds are also climbing up a speed limit sign, some topping five feet.
“Would you want your house to be right next door to this? It’s even embarrassing to bring someone to your house like this,” Emsweller said.
Emsweller said her neighbor’s yard in Walnut Park has been overgrown for the last three years she’s lived there. The home has also been vacant.
“I don’t care if it is the city. We are human too. We live like others. We pay taxes like others and we should be treated like others,” Emsweller said.
Emsweller said she’s called St. Louis City asking for help about 30 to 40 times over the last three years. She said someone came out in April to cut the grass but nothing since then has been done at the home.
“Just think, they haven’t been out here since the last of April. If you go out in the county, Ladue, you’re not going to see this. So why should we have to have to see it,” Emsweller said.
A property records search revealed the home’s owner is Nine Starz LLC based out of Los Angeles, California. News 4 tried to track down the homeowner but could not find a number.
St. Louis City and County said abandoned homes and absentee landlords are a big problem. Both said when yards are not taken care of, they try to reach out to the homeowners and fine them if no action is taken. If nothing is done at that point, the city or county will end up taking care of it, which falls back on the taxpayer.
Tracking down landlords, especially out-of-state, to hold them accountable, both said, is also tough, made even more difficult being short staffed, the city added.
Emsweller believes her neighbor’s yard should have never gotten to this point before the city stepped in.
“Even if they would have cut it once a month, once every month and a half, almost four or five months… just ridiculous,” Emsweller said.
The city said a crew from the forest department will be out to the home next to Emsweller’s the last week of August to take care of the yard. The department will also be doing the same at other homes in the same area.
Legal Services of Eastern Missouri is a local non-profit that helps people like Emsweller for free. The group goes after landlords who don’t take care of their lawn.
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