Thursday, July 13, 2006

Strike 3 . . . Hundred

Government in Indianapolis seems to have let down their citizens once again. It turns out that the HUD assistance programs are really just paying the rent for criminals to live here.

Pretty sad when the Federal Government has to come in and let us know how bad of a job we are doing. Will the Mayor please stand up and start doing something to make our city safer?

Here is the story from Channel 6:

INDIANAPOLIS -- Federal officials are connecting numerous high-profile crimes in the Indianapolis area with recipients of free housing.

Call 6's Rafael Sanchez first broke the story on Wednesday night about dozens of Hoosiers being arrested for housing fraud after alleged involvement with other crimes.

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson is in Indianapolis for Black Expo and is expected to address the crackdown on Thursday.

Officials said a large number of violent crimes over the past two years are traced to people that taxpayers pay the rent for each month.

The federal housing voucher program in Indianapolis is intended for people in need, but in several cases, officials said that people claimed poverty to get the help, then allowed others to live in their homes while allegedly committing crimes.

Sources told 6News that the two people charged in the deaths of seven people last month, Desmond Turner and James Stewart, should not have been living in subsidized housing because of previous criminal records.

Others connected to Turner and Stewart face charges for allowing them to live in the homes.
Others being charged in a citywide fraud sweep include a landlord who officials said has been collecting tax dollars for a person who was dead for seven months. The landlord has not returned the money, Sanchez reported.

Call 6 has also learned that police connected the shooting of IPD officer Michael Antonelli last November to people receiving federal housing assistance.

Two postal workers who claimed poverty are also being kicked off government handout rolls. Officials said the postal workers had several hundred thousand dollars stashed in hidden bank accounts.

Officials said the fraud they have uncovered is worth more than $1 million dollars.
Watch 6News beginning First At 5:00 for updates.


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