Colorado Springs — At about 7:30 a.m. Wednesday, a reported 35 Colorado Springs police officers gathered at a homeless camp near the South Shook’s Run Park, adjacent to the Quarry homeless camp that was cleared out Tuesday. According to witnesses the officers moved through the private property shouting at residents that they had one hour to pack up and leave.
Witnesses also said there was some heated exchange between residents and police about the unannounced raid and that the attempt to evict residents was eventually called off by the CSPD. Complete Colorado was notified that the raid was in progress through an intermediary of one of the residents.
The police action followed Tuesday’s clearing of the Quarry homeless camp, where cleanup operations by the city continued Tuesday.
Residents complain that they were not given any notice before the police showed up early in the morning. Flyers advising residents of the neighboring Quarry cleanup had been posted a week earlier, but no flyers had been posted on the adjacent private property where people have been camping, some for more than a year.
While Complete Colorado was conducting interviews with residents, city police were posting cleanup notices stating that the camp would be cleared out beginning Monday morning at 7:00 a.m.
Residents have no idea where they will go if the camp is cleared out.
The property where many of the homeless evicted from the Quarry went last night, as well as many who were already living there, is just southwest of South Shook’s Run Park and northwest of Royer Street. It lies along an old abandoned railroad grade once owned by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad.
A search of the County Assessor’s records, and consultation with the Assessor’s mapping personnel Wednesday reveals that the parcel in question isn’t listed in the Assessor’s database, so the ownership is in question. Further research into the ownership of the property indicates that the owners are deceased and Complete Colorado has not yet identified any heirs.
Whether city police can evict people camping on private property without first obtaining the owner’s permission and without going through the legal eviction process is still in question.
Attempts to contact the Colorado Springs Police Department PIO were unsuccessful as of press time.
This is a breaking story and updates will be made as they become available.
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