Senior residents attacked in N. Side apartment complex

April 24, 2012 4:22:05 AM PDT
Residents living at an apartment complex for seniors on Chicago's Near North Side say they are concerned about their safety after recent attacks.

The Evergreen Towers 2 apartment building, located in the 1300 block of North Cleveland, is a subsidized residence for senior citizens.

"There is too much violence happening in this senior residence," said Raymond Richard, a cousin of the one of the victims. "They need permanent security."

Richard says on Easter Sunday, his 62-year-old cousin, Harold Howell, was severely beaten in the building and his car was stolen. He is now in a hospital on life support.

"He was savagely beaten," he said. "He was duct taped, left outside his apartment."

"At this point he is not brain dead but does not have any brain activity. He doesn't have any motor skills, he is non-responsive," said Shene'e Howell, Harold's daughter. "It does not look good. We are very sad."

In the same building on February 3, 70-year-old B.T. Gregory and his handicapped son were held up at gun point in their apartment.

"They put duct taped around my mouth and they duct taped my feet and just kept putting guns to our heads," Gregory told ABC7. "It is scary, never thought anything like this would happen in my building."

Chicago police say they are actively investigating both incidents.

Tenants are demanding that Urban Property Advisors, the company that manages the building, take care of the security concerns in their building and put in resources to make the building safe

"The tenants are asking for permanent security and extra lights," said Sara Mathers, Metropolitan Tenants Organization.

Kelly Williams, executive vice president of Urban Property Advisor, says, "After the first incident we expanded the desk attendant hours at the building and ordered a new camera system, which is schedule to be installed starting tomorrow. After the second incident we expanded security coverage to 24 hours a day for a minimum of 60 days to reassess security needs."

The spokesperson for Urban Property Advisor, owned by Cullen Davis, said Evergreen Tower Two was built in 1999 and has not provided security because it is located in an affluent residential neighborhood. UPA says it is working with HUD and the tenant organization to train residents on increasing their security.