WELLFORD, SC (WSPA) – An Upstate police chief wants to see safety changes at a local apartment complex.
“It breaks our heart because Monarch is part of our community,” said Wellford Police Chief David Green. “They have a lot of good citizens in Monarch.”
Wellford Police Chief David Green says patrolling the Monarch Apartments off North Craft Street June 15th, 2019 led to the second largest drug bust there in two months.
“Got consent to search and every room there was narcotics,” said Green. “Close to a quarter pound of narcotics, a large sum of money and of course firearms.”
He says two people were cited for drug possession.
“Started speaking with somebody and found out no one in the apartment was actually on the lease. It was a cousin, which they never could give us a name,” Green said. “Two of the individuals staying there were felons so neither one of them were supposed to be around narcotics or firearms.”
He says that’s the problem: people who aren’t on the lease accused of crimes and not being evicted, and he’s been trying to get management to help by improved vetting of their residents.
“Once they found out that the people living there are not on the lease then immediately starting the eviction process and getting these people out,” Green said.
We were not allowed on the property to talk with residents but Thomas Campbell lives next door.
“I have no trouble at all with them,” Campbell said of the apartments. “Young lady that manages that complex over there… I think she does a jam up job. She can’t control who’s in it and what they’re doing in it.”
The property manager says they run criminal background checks but residents are allowed to have visitors.
She says if someone living in a certain apartment isn’t on the lease the resident can be evicted with 30 days notice.
“When you mix drugs in a small area like that.. someone’s bound to get hurt. The last drug dealer we cited over there was actively dealing at two 2 o’ clock in the afternoon with children playing outside,” Green said.
Green said he wants a closer working relationship with their management.
Police said that at that same complex earlier this month someone was charged when a handgun went off while they were playing with it and a bullet went into an apartment and almost hit a child.
The police are hosting a community meeting for all residents July 8th from 6-7 p.m. at Wellford City Hall.