ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Neighbors in a northeast Albuquerque area near Juan Tabo and Candelaria have dealt with fires, crime and now vandalism at a problem property. What one neighbor said he caught on surveillance video is now making the area dangerous for kids who live nearby.
Home surveillance video shows a group of teens taking turns bashing in a cinder block wall Sunday.
“It was pretty severe damage,” said Bob Trudo, who lives nearby.
As the teen boys kick down the wall, video shows them grab the loose cinder block to destroy it more. And for what?
“I don’t have a clue. They just don’t have any rhyme or reason for doing that kind of thing,” said Trudo. “It’s just pure vandalism.”
Trudo said his cameras caught the same group finishing off three more sections of the wall the next day. Pieces of broken cinder block now lay on the ground near the destroyed wall.
“They’re obviously upset with somebody or something, and this is their way of taking it out on them,” said Trudo.
The now-abandoned lot has been in the news before. Last year, 84-year-old Juanita Adams’ body was found inside her burning home. Investigation later revealed that Adams started the fire by smoking near her oxygen tank.
Neighbors said the home was crime ridden for years. The scorched structure was later demolished. But the abandoned lot is now overgrown with weeds, and a target for vandals.
Trudo worries that rough access lined with broken cinder block now leads directly to an open arroyo, and could be dangerous for neighborhood kids.
“If youngsters during the rainy season happen to go back there when there’s a lot of water flowing, they’re at extreme risk,” explained Trudo.
Recent rains have caused flash floods across the city, and the arroyo fills quickly. Trudo said he’s called the property owner and the Albuquerque Police Department to no avail.
For now, he’s keeping an eye out, in hopes the vandals stay away.
“That’s about all we can do at this point,” said Trudo.
KRQE News 13 called the city’s code enforcement to see if they can clean up the broken wall, but did not hear back by airtime Tuesday. Trudo said a responding officer told him they could not identify the teens by the surveillance video alone.