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Squatters take over vacant store

Posted at 11:42 PM, Jan 15, 2016

The producer at Onyx Theatre says the vacant store next door has become a homeless condo over the past month.

"We've got that blight right there and we need it to be taken care of," Troy Heard said.

Heard and other business owners in the complex say squatters started moving into a vacant store in the complex on Sahara near Maryland Parkway after a recent remodel.

The manager at Bad Attitude Boutique says she has had several items stolen, and even fears for her safety.

"We even stopped taking cash. You have to show me you have a credit card or you can't come in," Tushell said.

Both employees we spoke with say they have contacted authorities about the problem, but the homeless people continue showing up.

"It has become a homeless condo and each day it gets worse and worse," Heard said.

Action News reached out to Clark County and within hours a homeless outreach team was at the building talking to people inside.

Several of the squatters left, but within hours they were back as we talked with Heard.

One person inside even appeared to be shooting up with drugs at the front window as we walked by.

"Is that what you see all the time?" the reporter asked.

"No this is a first for me.  Holy [expletive]," Heard said.

Tushell and Heard both say the people in the vacant store use the walls of the building as their restrooms.

They realize it ultimately falls on the property owner to get them out, but want it done soon before it drives customers away.

"Until no trespassing is posted on there, you can't do anything," Heard said.

Clark County says a code enforcement team should be out at the property next week. They say if they find an issue with safety the store will be boarded up.

The county says it will notify the property owner of any problems that needed to be corrected.

Once that is done, the county says the property owner could face fines if they aren't addressed.