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Tenants seek relief from nightmare neighbor

By Jeff Humphrey, KXLY4 Reporter , jeffhu@kxly.com
Published On: Jan 23 2014 08:33:53 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 23 2014 08:34:44 PM CST
Court/Spain Condominiums
SPOKANE, Wash. -

Property owners at the Court/Spain, a north Spokane condominium complex, are asking a Superior Court judge to end their ordeal with a neighbor from hell.

Heroin and meth deals, multiple incidents of theft, public urination. The people living at the Court/Spain have seen it all at the hands of the guests and tenants of unit 11 and now the Spokane Police Department is in the middle of the lengthy process of evicting the owner in the wake of a series of undercover buys that led to a drug raid at the property.

In that raid police flushed 10 people out of a two bedroom condo operating as a flop house and serving up all the property crimes that come with addictions. Neighborhood conditions officer Traci Ponto is trying to shutdown unit 11, a process made more difficult because the man living here owns the condo in question.

Del Simchuk had his water turned off for non-payment and now raw sewage from his bathroom is leaking into Patti O'Brien's place on the lower floor.

"When they've opened up the wall and looked at it it's affecting the ceiling and down into the walls and down into the carpeting into the second bedroom," O'Brien's mother Shannon Jones said.

O'Brien has been forced out of her condo as a result of the seeping sewage.

Simchuk, who declined an on-camera interview Thursday, said he has cancer, which he has left him broke, unable to repair the plumbing or find a new place to live. So a judge will now have to decide how much longer neighbors have to put up with a problem unit in an otherwise nice condo complex.

"You do have to go to court and get liens against the property until you have enough where hopefully a judge would see that and send out a sheriff to move him out at that point," Jones said.

Code enforcement officials say they got their first complaint about unit 11 on Tuesday and are now investigating both substandard housing and unsafe living conditions. Neighbors expect some relief soon but say it has been a long time in coming.

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