Legal Question in Civil Litigation in Arizona

My husband and I purchased our home in 2008, after much searching and a careful check to the Tucson Police Department crime map, and we love our neighborhood - with one very big exception. The house across the street is one of 3 rentals on the street, and the tenants have proven to be a tremendous problem. The police are consistently being called to this address due to extreme noise and domestic disturbances. Drug deals were easily observed going on in the front yard, until police attention was called to it; now they take place in the alley behind the home. CPS has removed the 3 children from the home due to positive drug tests, and SWAT came in and raided the home last week.

The entire neighborhood is up in arms, and many of us have contacted the owner of the property by phone to ask that he intervene. The owner has taken no action against the tenants, and I need to know if there is anything my neighbors and I can do to protect our neighborhood against these people, or civil action to take against the landlord.

Thank you for your prompt response.

Asked on 7/07/12, 4:28 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Joyce Johnson-Stovall Johnson Stovall and Associates PLLC

If you are in HOA controlled property, you might want to bring this to the attention of the HOA. You can protect your neighborhood by calling the police when you see a crime underway. Calling the landlord is not necessarily going to solve the problem since he is motivated to collect the rent and has not seen the crime. Nothing worse than an absent landlord. The HOA can send the landlord a Notice of Criminal Conduct occutring on the property if the HOA agreement addresses that sort of thing. The police can arrest the tenants... or if the FBI is involved, they can seize the property if there are large scale crimes occurring on the premises. You can bring a civil action for nuisance against the landlord, but it is not the kind of case that most lawyers will take on a contingency.

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Answered on 7/09/12, 1:12 pm

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