MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Memphis’ mayor says he’s fed up with the owners and management of the Peppertree Apartments in Whitehaven, after the complex racked up hundreds of code violations and crime reports.
In the latest incident at Peppertree, a woman and young girl fell through a second-floor walkway that collapsed Tuesday night. Code Enforcement is looking into the incident.
Mayor Jim Strickland said Peppertree has received at least 113 citations from the city’s Office of Code Enforcement since January 2021. He’s had enough.
“The owner and the management team are reckless. They don’t care about their tenants,” Strickland said. “They try to obstigate and say it’s not their fault. There’s too much violence, the property is dilapidated. They need to step up or step out.”
Last November, Shelby County’s district attorney issued a nuisance order against the property. From March 2020 to October 2021, police responded to calls coming from the Peppertree apartments 1,649 times.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development noted a number of deficiences during its last inspection, which happened before the pandemic.
The list of problems included blocked or unuseable emergency exits, exposed wires, bug infestations, mold and mildew.
HUD gave Peppertree a passing grade in 2019, and the Tennessee Housing Development Agency gave it another one last year.
But Strickland said it’s time for a change.
“The community down in Whitehaven deserves better,” he said. “These residents deserve better. The neighboring apartments around it and that senior living facility that’s just directly adjacent there, they deserve better. And this owner and this property management company appear, they don’t even care. They’ll pay lawyers to fight it in court, but they won’t pay out money to fix the property. It’s ridiculous.”
WREG reached out to Tesco Properties, Peppertree’s owners, for comment, but we have not heard back.
They face another federal hearing in a nuisance complaint later this month.