Building where Worcester fireman died had complaints
WORCESTER, Mass. -- City officials say the Worcester apartment building in which a veteran firefighter lost his life had been the subject of three housing complaints and several code violations in the last year.
Jon Davies was killed Thursday and his partner injured when a portion of the burning building collapsed while they were searching for a missing resident.
The owner of the apartment building where the fire took place owns two other properties in Worcester. Investigators say the two other properties may have also been neglected, and tenants living there say they have open cases in housing court.
Investigators left Bellevue Realty, the company that manages 49 Arlington Street for the owner, on Friday afternoon. Housing inspectors say the property had numerous building code violations, and Worcester Police were called to the building more than 30 times since 2008.
“It’s heartbreaking, especially if it could have been prevented, you know, and it sounds like it could have. It’s heartbreaking, I feel bad for those families,” said American Rodriguez, a tenant of one of the apartment buildings.
Tenants of the other two Worcester buildings owned by the same woman and managed by Bellevue Realty are worried for their safety. At another triple-decker, America Rodriguez said she has only been living there for a month, but is going to ask for an inspection.
“I’m going to talk to him, definitely, and see if I can have an inspection done. I mean, we just moved here, like I said, everything looks fine. But, I definitely wouldn’t want to be caught up in something like that,” said Rodriguez.
At another building owned by the woman, tenants were too scared to talk on camera for fear of damaging an ongoing court case with the property manager.
Those tenants said the building is in disrepair. After numerous pleas, they said there is still no lock on the front door and roaches infest their apartments.
Tenants from that building said that they had an appearance in housing court yesterday with the same management company and the property manager, but he never showed.
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