Evictions moratorium made it harder to get rid of ‘bad actors’

The Graham police department has reached out to the owner of The Pines Apartments along Ivey Road, , R.D. Smith, II, to try and curb violence and illegal activities that have been reported at the complex during the last two years.

“We have reached out to the owners,” Graham police chief Kristi Cole said Tuesday in an interview with The Alamance News, adding that Smith has been willing to help the police department where he can.

However, a state and nationwide moratorium that had been in place since the height of the Covid-19 pandemic has added a wrinkle in the evictions process for landlords whose tenants run afoul of the law.

The moratorium was officially rescinded August 26, 2021, after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) had overstepped its legal authority in imposing the moratorium on evictions at the height of the pandemic in 2020.

“While the moratorium was in effect, [Smith] really couldn’t do anything,” Cole said. Like most landlords, Smith vets prospective tenants and runs background checks, though that process isn’t infallible, she said.

“Folks [are] reaching out to us,” Cole emphasized. “They are scared.”

Read each of these stories in this week’s (April 28) edition of The Alamance News and online at alamancenews.com:

Graham Police: Pines Apts. has become hot spot for crimes involving guns, drugs, and gangs: https://alamancenews.com/graham-police-pines-apts-has-become-hot-spot-for-crimes-involving-guns-drugs-and-gangs/

            Latest episode: Routine traffic stop results in apt. residents trying to interfere with police; three arrested – https://alamancenews.com/three-arrested-for-trying-to-disrupt-traffic-stop-at-the-pines-apts-in-graham/

            Serious charges involving previous incidents at the apartment complex: https://alamancenews.com/other-violent-crimes-at-the-pines/

            Some “regulars” have serious criminal records: https://alamancenews.com/some-charged-at-the-pines-have-long-prior-records

            Community policing is Graham police chief’s focus:  https://alamancenews.com/a-model-for-graham/