The City of Omaha plans to file 100 charges against Kim Anderson, the landlord of the Yale Park Apartments near 34th and Lake that was shut down last September after inspectors found nearly 2,000 code violations.
The 500 refugee residents were evacuated and moved to different locations. On Friday afternoon Mayor Jean Stothert says Anderson will face charges for not making significant enough progress on the property despite being granted two 30 day extentions. She says Anderson has made only minimal cosmetic repairs on the apartments. "Putting some paint on the outside of the building or clearing up some of the debris out on the lawn is not what we are most concerned with."
Omaha City Prosecutor Matt Kuhse says if convicted, Anderson could spend up to 50 years in jail. Each count carries up to six months in jail and a $500 fine or both.
Stothert says Anderson contacted a housing inspector Friday morning and said he would return to Omaha on February 4. Kuhse says if Anderson doesn't come forward then to receive his citation a warrant will be issued for his arrest.
Anderson's attorney, Jason Bruno, issued the following statement Friday afternoon:
"The charges against us are fabricated, malicious and designed to bully and intimidate Mr. Anderson. They are a blatant violation of the constitution decrees issued by the United States of America and Omaha’s own municipal codes and procedures along with the violations of Mr. Anderson’s constitutional rights.
"The city isn’t interested in forwarding Mr. Anderson any due process considering he has been negotiating and trying to get to a reasonable resolution in a construction schedule. The City has refused to work with Mr. Anderson in any fashion and is more interested in scoring political points in the press than ensuring citizens receive constitutional due process."