A residence in Rutland that had been taken over by squatters is now vacant, after a Kelowna mayoral candidate and businessman was asked to step in and help.
David Habib was contacted by the out-of-town homeowner after calls to the police and city were unsuccessful at removing the individuals from the boarded-up two-storey house in the 200-block of Nickel Road, said Habib.
Habib explained that his experience working with the community has equipped him with the skills to have a productive discussion with those inside the home.
On the evening of Sept. 29, the house was vacated and on Sept. 30, Habib and a crew of contractors from Demolition King were on the property clearing out the residence.
Habib said that they had a needle collection team go through the property before the contractors arrived and he added that dozens of bikes were extracted from the premises.
“I’m glad that this homeowner got his home back, his property back, and this community got their neighbourhood back,” he said.
According to neighbours, the house has had a squatting problem for a long time. The property has been subject of many police calls, often late at night. A protest was held across the street from the property on Sept. 17, urging the city to take action to remove the residents.