Pubdate: Fri, 22 Jun 2007
Source: Langley Advance (CN BC)
Copyright: 2007 Lower Mainland Publishing Group Inc.
Author: Matthew Claxton


Langley RCMP will keep up the pressure on a home that has its
Brookswood neighbours worried.

One of the biggest problems for Langley RCMP officers recently has
been a house on a quiet street in Brookswood.

Neighbours, who say the home is a drug house, were glad to see a
Township bylaws crew arrive Tuesday morning to clean up a pile of junk
on the front lawn.

The home, in the 20400-block of 37B Avenue, stands out from its
neighbours. Where they have well-manicured lawns, this has an
overgrown patch of weeds.

Accompanied by two RCMP officers, the bylaw workers hauled away
garbage, appliances and old furniture that have been sitting on the
lawn and driveway for some time. The cost will be billed to the
current resident.

"It's about time," said Chuck Standish, who lives down the street from
the property.

Neighbours have been frustrated with the house for months, Standish

Since November, when the previous owner of the home died, there have
been problems.

"The owner died without leaving a will," said Const. Todd MacNeil, of
the Langley RCMP community response unit.

Now the ownership of the building is being contested between the
former owner's son, a former common-law husband and an ex-husband.

"It's just a unique circumstance," MacNeil said.

"I've never seen anything like this before, to be quite honest."

Since November, traffic to the house has increased significantly, with
people coming and going at all hours of the day and night, neighbours

Police, bylaw officers and the Township fire department have been
frequent visitors, said Standish, but until Tuesday nothing seemed to
have had an effect.

"This is a positive sight," he said.

Another neighbour, who asked not to be named, said it has been scary
for residents.

Some of the visitors looked like stereotypical low-lifes, while others
were obviously professionals and average folks, she said.

Neighbours have been vigilant in keeping an eye on the home and
letting police know what is going on there, MacNeil said.

Complaints have ranged from noise to suspicious activity and come in
frequently, but so far police have made no noteworthy arrests there,
he said.

Until the situation changes, the current occupant can expect to see
RCMP officers around frequently, MacNeil said.

"We're actively targeting that house, it's a problem house," MacNeil

Police will work with bylaw officers to keep pressure on the resident,
he said.

"The gentleman that lives there now, we deal with him on an almost
daily basis," said MacNeil.

They will continue to rely on neighbours for information about the
home, he said.

Problem houses are nothing new to Langley, and there is usually at
least one and sometimes more at any one time.

The houses can be shut down and sometimes condemned. Earlier this year
a crack house in Aldergrove was knocked down after a police and
Township crackdown.

However, the people living there usually just move on.

"Usually, it's the same characters moving into a different house,"
MacNeil said.
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