Forest Grove murder house now neighborhood eyesore

Forest Grove murder house now neighborhood eyesore

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by Wayne Havrelly, KGW reporter

kgw.com

Posted on February 24, 2013 at 5:47 PM

Updated Monday, Feb 25 at 12:14 PM

FOREST GROVE, Ore. -- If there's a run-down vacant house in your neighborhood, you know how frustrating it can be. There's a dramatic example in Forest Grove, where a home has been sitting empty since 2009, after it was the scene of a grisly crime.

A strong sense of sadness surrounds the now-dilapidated home on 21st Avenue. Neighbor Gary Alexander believes the rotting house would make his friend, who used to live there upset.

"She would just be devastated if she saw the way this has been let go," said Alexander.  

Tragically,  Cindy England will never see her home again.  She was shot and killed by her estranged husband a day after Thanksgiving in 2009.

Her son Kevin also died in the attack.  Her husband killed himself in the garage.

"The place is just sitting there, nobody seems to want it," said next-door neighbor Joyce King.  Early on, squatters and thieves were the problem.

"They were actually eating their food in there and they even stole Cindy's car," said Alexander. 

Alexander took care of the yard for about a year after the murders, hoping that someone would start taking responsibility.  When Chase Bank got involved, he had to stop. 

KGW was unsuccessful in contacting bank officials over the weekend, but Alexander said he did last week.

"Now they're saying they are doing absolutely nothing with the house anymore," he said

While it's unclear who is responsible for the rotting house, one thing is clear--it's hurting the neighborhood. 

"We work hard to keep our yards nice and it's so trashy-looking and scary really," said King.

Alexander's home is exactly the opposite.  He's won the award for best curb appeal in town three years running. Now because of a relocation, he's trying to sell his beautiful restored home.  However, the problem house next door is not helping matters. 

"I know most of the neighborhood would like to see the house flattened and start over again," he said.

Late Sunday afternoon, as we were working on the story,  a process server representing Chase Bank stopped by the house. He said to tell everyone in the neighborhood that he just posted a 30-day notice for anyone in the house to get out.  After that, the bank will clean up the home and put it up for sale. 

Neighbors are ecstatic.

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