A city in Wyoming has been overrun with an unprecedented homeless population that’s destroyed a vacant motel and has left hundreds of pounds of feces across the area, according to its mayor.
Mayor Bruce Knell detailed the destructive behavior of roughly 200 homeless people in Casper, WY. who have been creating a “mess” throughout the streets and parks, as well as a closed motel where squatters left millions in property damage.
“They destroyed everything,” he told Cowboy State Daily. “It’s horrible.”
Homeless people who squatted at the Econo Lodge motel caused more damage than the flooding that initially closed the business down, Knell reportedly said. The property was condemned by the city and the bank that owns the foreclosed business boarded it up.
“It was inhabitable, and it was unsafe,” Knell told Cowboy State Daily.
Other homeless people are squatting in other abandoned properties in Casper that don’t have water or electricity.
“It’s like nothing I’ve ever seen,” Knell said. “It’s third-world country stuff happening in Casper, Wyoming.”
“We know very well we cannot litigate our way or arrest our way out of the problem, but our police need some teeth to start dealing with the squatting,” he also told the news outlet.
“They’re just causing so many problems.”
Meanwhile, city staff has been forced to scoop up about 500 pounds of human feces in Casper’s downtown, where many homeless people loiter, the news outlet reported.
Some set up camp in local parks and bike paths, while others sleep in their cars.
Some of the crime in the city, Wyoming’s second most populated city, can be tied to homeless people, Knell said.
“In desperate times people do desperate things, and unfortunately we’re the ones left having to deal with it,” he said.
Some people living on the streets come to Casper for a homeless shelter in the city, but when they are kicked out or denied entry, they never leave, Knell noted.
“There’s a certain part of the homeless population, whether substance abuse or mental illness, that is getting them to where they don’t want to conform to society’s rules,” Knell told the Cowboy State Daily.
“When they do that they’re not allowed to go in the shelter, which means they’re just out and about in our community raising hell.”
Casper is just one of numerous cities facing a heartbreaking homeless problem, including the Big Apple where more than 4,000 people didn’t have a roof over their heads during a citywide tally in January.
The figure was nearly an 18% jump from 2022.
The NYC shelter population surpassed 100,000 earlier this year as the city continues to take on a flood of arriving migrants.
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