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Rooming House Shut Down, Man Arrested

Springfield rooming house

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — Springfield officials shut down a suspected rooming house Thursday. They were alerted to the problem by a call to the city’s 3-1-1 line. Not only did the house get shut down, the inspection also lead to the arrest of one of the people living there.

Wednesday, the Department of Code Enforcement responded to a suspected rooming house, a place where three or more unrelated people are living in the same unit. While it may sound innocent enough, David Cotter, Deputy Director of the Code Enforcement Housing Division says rooming houses can be dangerous.

“If one tenant or another tenant isn’t warm enough they may use electric space heaters they may have double dead bolt locks on their doors. We try and prevent those types of situations because of the entrapment,” Cotter explained.

Once the complaint was issued it wasn’t long before a team assembled for a single search.

“A team inspection consists of now bringing Springfield Fire, we have an ordinance police squad that comes with us also we bring the electrical, plumbing, zoning departments, the building department along with the housing inspector.  And we do one group inspection,” Cotter told us.

When the teams arrived here on Earl Street, not only did they find and illegal rooming house, one of those residents had a felony warrant and there were narcotics and drug paraphernalia in the house too.

In all the house, which had a dozen people living in the 2nd and 3rd floor units, was inspected and evacuated within just two hours. According to Cotter, if you suspect there may be a rooming house in your neighborhood, it’s not something you should ignore.

Following the inspection, 21 year-old Amaury Rivera was arrested on a charge of larceny over $250. The landlord of the Earl Street house is fully cooperating with the Department of Code Enforcement.

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