New Calls To Curb Rising Crime At Memphis Apartments With Violent History

(Memphis) Violence can happen almost anywhere, but some tenants at the Peppertree Apartments in Whitehaven say it happens far too often here.

Police squad cars were back again Wednesday after a three-year-old was shot apparently by a stray bullet.

Patricia Jones lives at the Peppertree Apartments.

“But police are over here a lot and I live up here,” Jones said.

Many tenants were reluctant to talk on camera about a complex some say is besieged with drug sales, robberies, stabbings and drive by shootings.

The apartments are gated and security guards can be seen patrolling the property, but that doesn’t keep out violence.

“We do work here, but we can’t control what goes on inside the house. I’m fine, I got to keep y’all off the property,” unidentified security guard said.

Back in 2006, the owners of the Peppertree Apartments were brought before Environmental Court Judge Larry Potter because of a rash of crime problems.

That same year, the Shelby County District Attorney’s Office filed a public-nusiance complant because police recorded more than 160 violent incidents including two murders and 60 aggravated assaults at the apartments.

So, WREG wanted to know if the Peppertree Apartments could or should be shut down?

City Councilman Harold Collins represents the Whitehaven area and works for the DA’s office. He says it’s a Catch 22 situation.

“As a councilman I’d love to see that thing go away. I also have to recognize that if the D.A.’s office were to shut it down families would have to be moved and I’m certain the City of Memphis has no available emergency housing,” Collins said.

Collins said he’d like to see the management of the Peppertree Apartments join the Memphis Safeway Project. It’s a partnership between management and local police to work together and lead to the prosecution of criminals who commit crimes on apartment properties.