Homeless encampment a growing problem for Fountain Valley residents who say police, government ignore

Orange County Register | 8/1/2017 | Greg Mellen
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FOUNTAIN VALLEY — Jonathan An, a homeowner in the New Chase condominiums off Harbor Boulevard, points to a jacuzzi in the gated community.

“They bathe here a lot,” he said, referring to his new neighbors who live in a large homeless encampment that has sprung up on the banks of the Santa Ana River bordering his complex.

Condo - Resident - Points - Roll - Toilet

Another condo resident points to a roll of toilet paper and makeshift bathroom within three feet of a gate the residents have for accessing the river trail – which most now avoid.

Jennifer London said she feels it is no longer safe to use the gate. She said she has had bottles thrown at her when she tries to exit and was accosted by a man swinging a rake at her.

Bike - Patio - Trellis - Intruders

She also had a bike stolen off her first-floor patio and resorted to installing a floor-to-ceiling trellis to keep out intruders, she said.

Jeanina Cole said she woke up one day to the unobstructed view of a tent just 12 feet from her front door. The tent has since been moved, but the memory is vivid.

Friday - Afternoon - Dozen - Residents - Stories

On a Friday afternoon, a dozen residents of the complex gathered to swap stories about how their lives have been thrown into turmoil since the homeless people have started camping nearby.

These residents say they are the population that has been forgotten and left out of the homeless debate.

Homeowners - Compaints - Orange - County - Board

The homeowners also say that despite their many compaints, including appearing at a recent Orange County Board of Supervisors meeting, their pleas have fallen on deaf ears both with government and law enforcement officials.

“We have never, ever, ever, ever seen anything like this,” Cole said of the influx of people living in the encampment. She was unnerved enough, she said she bought a high-powered set of lights with motion sensors.

Neighbor

She said her upstairs neighbor had...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Orange County Register
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