The Investigators

May 21, 2014 6:59 PM by Tom McNamara and Paul Birmingham

N4T Investigators: Midtown residents complain of packrats, green pool

Picture an apartment complex with reports of roaches, packrats and a putrid swimming pool.

Some residents in midtown Tucson say they struggle every day with those problems. So they contacted the News 4 Tucson Investigators for help.

Oakwood Terrace apartments on North Balboa near Oracle and Glenn was built back in the mid-1960s.

But now it's showing its age. Maria Dominguez, a resident of the Oakwood Terrace, has a new name for her home: Hell Pit.

Dominguez has lived at this self-described Hell pit for the past two years. She tells the News 4 Tucson Investigators she's encountered problems with everything from roaches to rodents.

The management company's response?

"All they tell you is we'll take care of it, and they don't," Dominguez says.

On a recent visit to Oakwood Terrace, the News 4 Tucson Investigators spotted broken windows, apparent packrat holes and a dirty green murky mess of a pool.

"Oh, my God. I have asthma. And it stinks like somebody died in there," Dominguez says.

The News 4 Tucson Investigators have also spoken to several residents at Oakwood Terrace, who say they were too fearful to go on camera. But they say their complaints have largely fallen on deaf ears.

So the News 4 Tucson Investigators went to the offices of Grijalva Realty. We wanted to find out exactly what was going on at Oakwood Terrace.

Tucson Code Enforcement documents a report made about a packrat infestation more than a month ago. But, the News 4 Tucson Investigators heard a different story from the company.

"We've had no reports of packrat problems neither from the tenants, nor the city,"
Laura Grijalva said.

Grijalva goes on to say they are aware of the pool problems and are working to clean things up. Workers have even added chemicals so mosquitoes don't breed in the water.

"The pool is under repair at this point but it is locked so people don't use it," Grijalva says.

Grijalva also tells the News 4 Tucson Investigators her company does take action when they're made aware of an issue. She adds they only took over management of the place in December.

"We've done furnace repairs. Now we're doing air-conditioning repairs. Anything that needed to be done we've taken care of. But, obviously, we can't address a problem if we're not aware of the problem," Grijalva said.

Since the News 4 Tucson Investigators got involved, the City of Tucson has sent notification to Grijalva Realty about the packract infestation. We'll let you know what happens.

If you have something you'd like the News 4 Tucson Investigators to check out, email us at investigators@ or call the News 4 Tucson Investigators tip-line at 955-4444


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