Drug Dealing, Theft Are Result Of Rented Rooms
CHARLOTTE, NC- Drug dealing and thefts are on the rise in the University Area and police say it has a lot to do with apartment complexes renting individual rooms near UNC Charlotte.
They started out as a low cost options for college kids, but now cops say they're turning into crime hot spots.
"All different types of traffic. It's not really the university feel that it was originally built for," said Hecker.
Police say that's happening at multiple complexes. Non-students are renting rooms as low-cost options and the students can't do anything about it.
"To have the student feel would be more comforting," said Hecker.
14 of the university area's 53 multi-family communities rent individual rooms. Police say 43 percent of reported crime in the area happens in those 14 complexes.
"Anything from petty thefts to burglaries to cars being stolen. Drug offenses. Home invasion-type robberies," said Lt. Dave Johnson with CMPD's University City Division.
Police are working on a citizen's adivsory board to set new rules for mult-family communities targeted to students.
Police want a security officer on duty at night, more cameras installed, atougher screening process and a rent-to-students only policy.
"We're not looking to shut anybody down on this. We're looking to work with these communities and we're working with most of them already," said Johnson.
Individual room rentals are considered illegal right now under city zoning. But that won't be enforced until a citizen's advisory board irons things out at the beginning of next year.