North Memphis Business Owner Fights City Of Memphis Over Public Alley

(Memphis) “I heard machines coming, looked out and saw all the police cars. I said, Ph my gosh. What’s going on?'” Anthony Scurlock said.

His work day started with city work crews cutting through a concrete wall behind his Pallet Services Company on North Main.

“All we basically try to do is work,” said Scurlock. “For 25 years, I basically feel I have not been treated fairly.”

The west side of Scurlock’s business borders a public alley.

For years, he says no one tended to the upkeep, so he cleared the alley and used it as a  loading dock.

He built the brick-wall fence to keep out thieves.

“All we did was kinda refurbish, make it nice, keep people from coming in stealing,” said Scurlock.

It wasn’t a problem until he says the city decided to install a sewer line through the alley, so Scurlock sued.

The case is still pending.

Monday morning, the city, after giving a two-week notice, moved in.

City officials tell us private citizens can’t take over a public alley and that Scurlock was told to clear the property in April.

They say a new subdivision is under construction and he’s known about it since 2005.

Monday, Anthony Scurlock got a reprieve. Shortly after our cameras arrived, city crews packed up.

Scurlock’s attorney, who is working on a court date for the case, says things are now on hold.

The city says a specific date for demolition is now being discussed.

“I hope they hold off for a while. It takes money and it takes time to rebuild,” said Scurlock.

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