Residents on Heather Drive in Kings Park are asking the Town of Smithtown to act on what they call a junk yard being run from a private home on their block, creating unsightly and unsanitary conditions.
Corlyn Nedwick, who resides on Heather Drive, appeared before the town board on Tuesday and spoke on behalf of the neighbors who border the property, residents on Willow Drive and nearby Jason Court. Nedwick, who identified the property owner as Charles Richie, said that Richie has “allowed his home for the past 30 years to deteriorate and become unsightly.”
Nedwick said she has never come to a town board meeting before, but has made numerous calls to the health department and public safety. She said Richie sells discarded bikes, exercise equipment and scrap metal, from the yard.
“Due to his collection of garbage and an open garage that spills out additional garbage, our neighborhood is frequented with rats,” said Nedwick. “He is endangering his neighbors and the health and safety of our children.”
Nedwick presented pictures to the board of the property, which town supervisor, Patrick Vecchio, has said he has seen.
Vecchio said the town has taken enforcement action against Richie. “There are now two warrants for his arrest. We have known about the property for at least the last year, attempted enforcement action, went to court,” said Vecchio. “I guess he didn’t show and the judge issues a warrant.”
Vecchio then called on town attorney, John Zollo, to take action.
Zollo recommended an inspection be done at the site. “What we will do, is today we will start with the process so we can get it on for the next town board meeting,” said Zollo. We have enough time to do that. The warrants are outstanding, which means we can do this.”
It appeared that town officials were taking further action on the house and were seen in the street in front of the home on Thursday morning. Officials could be seen looking at the front yard, filled with trash, abandoned bikes and discarded items. An abandoned vehicle in front of the home had a sticker on the window, placed there on Dec. 10, indicating that the car would be towed in 24 hours if the owner did not register it.
"We've been very tolerant," said Nedwick outside her home on Thursday. "I've reached my breaking point. We love our home and we just want him to take care of his property."