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'It's horrendous': Tenants at Portland mobile home park say nearby homeless camp has 'taken over'

Tenants at Tall Firs RV mobile home park say they feel attacked and threatened by those staying at a homeless camp nearby.

PORTLAND, Ore. — A homeless camp on Southeast Division Street is taking over an RV mobile home park. Residents of the mobile home park say people living in the camp have broken into the park, robbed tenants and threatened them with weapons. 

The residents told KGW it feels as if they are living through a nightmare and they don’t feel safe leaving their homes.

The sidewalk on Southeast 157th Avenue is covered in trash, tents and broken-down cars.

Piles of clothes and old bikes line a chain link fence – the only separation between Tall Firs RV mobile home park and the camp.

“It’s everybody over here on this side of the park that’s having the biggest problems,” said Jeremy Robeson, who owns the park.

He said the homeless camp moved into the area months ago, but the problem is getting worse. Now he has tenants who are leaving, which puts his business in jeopardy.

“My ability to get new tenants in there is basically zero because nobody wants to live next to everything that’s going on over there,” he said. 

Credit: Blair Best, KGW
A homeless camp seen on Southeast 157th Avenue near Tall Firs Mobile Home & RV Park.

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People from the homeless camp are breaking in, threatening tenants with weapons and setting things on fire, according to residents. 

“It’s horrendous I’ve lived here 13 years, never once has this ever been like this," said Darla Sheets. “Junk everywhere, rats, no respect whatsoever— taking over the street." 

She put up barricades behind her home to stop people from camping there.

Another resident named Sandra Lundy said her home was just broken into and now she's afraid to leave. "I’m paranoid," she added.  

Lundy said those at the homeless camp are going through her trash and plug into her electricity. She wants to move but can’t afford it.

“We bought, we paid for it, we’re surviving and we’re doing everything we can to survive— we don’t need them to add to it,” she said.

“We keep finding them in the middle aisles under people’s trailers taking anything from cinder blocks to lawn mowers to children’s bicycles,” added Louis Hanset who also lives at Tall Firs.

The residents are frustrated by the lack of response from the city and police.

“The police, even when they show up they say 'Oh well they’re homeless, we can give them a ticket but we really can’t arrest them or do anything about that,'” Robeson added.

Tenants have looked into putting up a six-foot fence but fear being attacked if they get too close to the camp.

KGW has reached out to the city, police and fire departments and are still waiting on a response.

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