ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — During the first week of June, the City of Englewood and other local agencies will begin removing a homeless encampment along the banks of the South Platte River due to "serious issues with public health and safety", a release from the city said.
The camp is located near West Dartmouth Avenue and South Platte River Drive.
Englewood Police responded to a stabbing in that area on May 2 that involved an altercation between two homeless men. Patrol officers have also encountered trip wires that were installed to discourage people from encroaching near the camps, the city said in its release.
Hypodermic needles and human waste have been found along the shoreline.
“The growing encampment is creating serious issues with public health and safety,” said Englewood Police Chief John Collins, “For the welfare of the public and of the individuals residing at the camp, it’s simply become a dangerous situation that can’t be ignored.”
Signs were posted and flyers were distributed Tuesday declaring the site a public nuisance under Title 15 of the Englewood Municipal Code, the release said. The area has also has been identified as a flood control and erosion mitigation area by the Urban Drainage and Control District.
The city will begin dismantling the camp on June 4. Representatives from Change the Trend, a group whose mission is to mobilize and equip the Englewood, Littleton, and Sheridan communities to constructively engage the issue of homelessness, will be on hand with information to assist displaced individuals with food, medical care, shelters, and other resources.
Co-responders from AllHealth Network will assist with behavioral health services.
The effort to remove the camps is expected to be completed within one week. Once that’s complete, the Urban Drainage and Control District will begin a reseeding campaign to mitigate the damage to the river bank.