Rockwell homeowner reaches nuisance agreement on problem property

Published 12:05 am Tuesday, April 11, 2023

ROCKWELL — A Rockwell home with a long history of disturbances was subject to a nuisance abatement judgment last month, that could result in its forfeiture by the property owner.

According to the N.C. Department of Public Safety, Rowan County Superior Court Judge Michael Adkins signed a consent judgment for a Chapter 19 Nuisance Abatement action against the property owners of 927 Carter Loop Road in Rockwell on March 10.

That judgment was the final step in a civil nuisance abatement case brought by Rowan County. Chapter 19 of the N.C. General Statutes defines nuisance activities and provides for a civil remedy to abate such criminal acts and their detrimental impacts on the community.

“This address has been a problem for years, causing the community to live in fear and constantly draining emergency services and law enforcement resources,” Rowan County Sheriff Travis Allen said. “This judgment could not have been reached without collaboration from the community, Rowan County officials and members of the ALE (Alcohol Law Enforcement) Nuisance Abatement Team.”

The property qualified for forfeiture to the Rowan-Salisbury Schools Board of Education based on the criteria in Chapter 19. However, the parties in the dispute reached a consent judgment that called for the occupants of the property to be evicted within 15 days.

That consent also outlined the intended future use of the property, which forbids future nuisance-related activities, restricts patrons from trespassing upon the property and bans the current occupants from operating a nuisance property elsewhere. It does, however, leave the property in the current owners’ hands. The sheriff’s office will now have control over who is allowed to live in the property, and will have to sign off on any rental agreement.

“I appreciate the cooperation from this family as we collaborated together to solve this problem and reach a successful resolution for all parties involved,” Allen said. “I also commend the citizens of this community for collaborating with law enforcement to ensure the community returns to a peaceful life. Without these collaborations, investigations like these cannot be reached.”

Scottie Shoaf, the special agent in charge of the nuisance abatement team, added, “The nuisance abatement law provides a solution to problem locations that strain law enforcement resources and reduce the quality of life for others.

“These investigations are only completed with proper community involvement and by forging ongoing relationships with the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office and the county attorney. This judgment brings a permanent resolution, and I look forward to seeing the positive changes this will facilitate in the community.”