ST. LOUIS — The city said Friday that it has filed a petition against rental property owner TEH Realty, describing the property as a "public nuisance" and asking that the court either order it to fix conditions at Southwest Crossing Apartments in south St. Louis or sell the property.
Residents have complained of unlivable conditions and employees have said they haven't been paid. Sen. Josh Hawley has called for a federal investigation into the property owner, and on Monday tenants at Southwest Crossing Apartments started a rent strike.
The petition, filed in St. Louis Circuit Couty, said that the city's building division has cited TEH Realty for more than 68 property maintenance code violations, which remain unabated, and condemned 14 units. TEH Realty has not paying its water bills or provided trash pickup services at Southwest Crossing Apartments, the city said.
"Enough is enough," Mayor Lyda Krewson said in a tweet on Friday. "For years, TEH Realty has operated a nuisance property at Southwest Crossing Apartments, racking up 68 property code violations, 14 condemned units & other failures that pose threat to safety of residents. Today, @STLCityGov announces it's taking them to court."
The city said it will keep providing water service and trash pick-ups for tenants while it continues to bill TEH Realty for the costs.
City spokesperson Jacob Long said in a statement that the city "stands ready, willing and able to help facilitate any potential sale of the property to a responsible owner and will continue to cite (TEH Realty) for any additional violations in the interim.”
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