Being a police officer doesn’t necessarily translate to being a good judge of Metro Codes violations. In the past 24 months, Metro Police Officers took the time to submit 89 complaints to the codes department during the course of their duties. Of those complaints submitted, 47 (53%) were found to be “No Cause for Action”, “No Violation Found”, or “Duplicate” when inspectors took the time to physically investigate the complaint from the officer, while 27 (30%) found violations that notices were generated for (mostly abandoned vehicles), and a handful remain as open cases.
In a time that the City of Nashville is short on police officers, despite record growth, and in a time when it can take over 6 hours for an officer to show up in non-emergency situations, why are we using our police officers to submit complaints to the codes department? We have a record number of unsolved crimes in this city – while one Metro Officer actually took the time to report a resident of N 2nd Ave for selling candy and drinks without a permit – a complaint which codes quickly kicked back as ‘no violation found’. Where is the leadership in the MNPD that’s setting the correct priorities for these officers on the streets. Why are they worried about selling without permits, a person hoarding, a person sleeping in a tent in the backyard, when we just had 5 shootings in a 12-hour period?
Have all other crimes been solved, and now we’re just depending on the MNPD to generate work for the codes department? Perhaps the officers are doing the bare minimum, since that’s what the city is paying them? Metro Police Officers were not given their promised Cost of Living raise this year, after all.
We reviewed the most recent 24 months of data from the codes department, specifically, property standards violations submitted by Metro Police Department Officers, and here are some of the violations that the MNPD reported to codes:
“Operating a business from the home – retail sales of drinks, candy, chips, etc. without permits (use not allowed)”
-from complaint 16-1144905. MNPD reported a resident of N 2ND ST for selling drinks, candy, chips, without a permit. Metro Codes found no violation.
“Auto repair in the parking lot – spreading to adjoining parcels – this is a repeat violator, take appropriate action.”
-An officer reported AUTOZONE at 2340 Murfreesboro Pk for allowing people to do small repairs in the parking lot of the auto parts store, even noted that appropriate action should be taken because they are repeat violators. Codes determined that there was no violation when they inspected the property.
“Dilapidated structure – porch is falling off – hole in roof.”
Complaint 17-1155154, Inspectors found no violations upon inspection.
“exposed wiring, extension cords hanging all over”
Complaint 18-1183779, location is a Discount Tobacco Store on Murfreesboro Pk
“Illegal unpermitted structure in the rear and illegal use (persons living in a tent in the rear).”
-from complaint 18-1174146.
“High grass in rear yard – interior of residence unsanitary – trash and debris – overcrowding”
-from complaint 16-1144734.
“trailer on the right of way with an extension cord running to it”
-from complaint 18-1181537. Inspectors found no violations.
“Unsanitary conditions – hoarding”
-from complaint 16-1146438. Inspectors found no violations.
Do we want our MNPD Officers spending their time reporting high grass, a business using too many extension cords, a person that’s hoarding, a roof that’s falling in? interior upkeep of a house that’s not to their standards? Those are the things that officers are taking the time to report to codes. There are also dozens of ‘vehicle in right of way’ complaints, which may be more appropriate to report, in order to track abandoned vehicles through the proper process – however an officer reporting a resident for selling drinks in front of her house, it just seems a bit much.
A representative from Metro Codes explained that Metro Officers have slips they can fill out during their shifts while on patrol, and then submit so they can be delivered to the codes department, or they can call the codes line, or even use the new hub (311) portal.
Perhaps being a Property Standards Inspector is more lucrative than being a police officer – the average base salary for a PSI II is $60,845, while the average for a PO II is currently $58,978 in Nashville (source data.nashville.gov).
Nashville, are you OK with your officers noticing and reporting codes violations during their calls? For ‘unsanitary conditions’?, for ‘too many extension cords’?, for selling candy and drinks without a permit?
Here’s the full data of from the codes department we used in this story:
|Source||Request #||Reported Problem|
|Metro PD||16-1146438||Unsanitary conditions - hoarding|
|Metro PD||17-1171501||Two abandoned vehicles on the right of way. Nissan Titan and a Nissan Altima.|
|Metro PD||16-1144737||Two abandoned vehicles on the right of way.|
|Metro PD||17-1154578||Two abandoned vehicles on the right of way - 1998 White Chevy pickup and a 1981 Cadillac.|
|Metro PD||18-1181537||trailer on the right of way with an extension cord running to it|
|Metro PD||17-1170970||PROBLEM REPORTED|
|Metro PD||17-01158246||PROBLEM REPORTED|
|Metro PD||17-1172812||PROBLEM REPORTED|
|Metro PD||18-1173629||PROBLEM REPORTED|
|Metro PD||17-1172375||PROBLEM REPORTED|
|Metro PD||17-1155046||per Metro Police unsafe conditions in rooms|
|Metro PD||16-1144905||Operating a business from the home - retail sales of drinks, candy, chips, etc. without permits (use not allowed)|
|Metro PD||18-1179597||Open storage of junk, trash and building materials. Dilapidated shed, dilapidated main structure. Evaluate for possible Code Repair or Demo. See attached photos.|
|Metro PD||16-1144583||Officer Arthur Hitt with MNPD advised there is a RV with generator parked in the parking lot of Lowes, Dollar Tree (with 3 vehicles) for approximately 2 months|
|Metro PD||18-1185922||MNPD via Hub #00085028, 24th and McKinney: disabled motor vehicle; blue mazda 4-door; VIN JM1BK32F471624135|
|Metro PD||17-1161073||Lot area overgrown - poison ivy|
|Metro PD||17-1155540||Junk, trash and debris on the property.|
|Metro PD||17-1172765||Inoperable motor vehicle in parking lot|
|Metro PD||17-1154559||IMV with flat tires on the street reported by Officer Baptist (MNPD)|
|Metro PD||18-1182478||HOW TAKEN: Metro PD
|Metro PD||17-1159189||HOW TAKEN: Metro PD
Overcrowding, Junk trash and debris
|Metro PD||18-1175117||HOW TAKEN: Metro PD
ABANDONED VEHICLE ROW
|Metro PD||18-1180155||High grass/weeds|
|Metro PD||16-1144734||High grass in rear yard - interior of residence unsanitary - trash and debris - overcrowding|
|Metro PD||16-1143546||Grass is 4 ft tall near sidewalk - system shows we inspected and closed the high grass case out on June 2, 2016 ?????|
|Metro PD||16-1144623||furniture and trash in back yard, back deck has holes. The house is not secure|
|Metro PD||16-1144736||Fire damaged building - unsecure|
|Metro PD||18-1183779||exposed wiring, extension cords hanging all over. officer Michael Dudley 615-512-321|
|Metro PD||17-1171499||Dilapidated, abandoned structure - no utilities. Trash and junk in yard|
|Metro PD||18-1183755||Dilapidated vacant building - unsecure - homeless living in it - trash and unsanitary conditions|
|Metro PD||18-1174146||Dilapidated structure, trash and junk in the yard - repeat violator. Illegal unpermitted structure in the rear and illegal use (persons living in a tent in the rear).|
|Metro PD||16-1149559||Dilapidated structure, open storage of junk, trash and debris - inoperable motorcycle.|
|Metro PD||17-1155154||Dilapidated structure - porch is falling off - hole in roof.|
|Metro PD||17-1162807||dilapidated house|
|Metro PD||18-1186962||Dilapidated home|
|Metro PD||17-1167151||Burned out vehicle on the right of way|
|Metro PD||17-1161735||Auto repair in the parking lot - spreading to adjoining parcels - this is a repeat violator, take appropriate action.|
|Metro PD||18-1185326||Abandoned white trailer|
|Metro PD||17-1156899||Abandoned white Honda Civic 2dr on the right of way|
|Metro PD||16-1150467||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way on flats - 1972 Ford Pinto LIC # AA68125|
|Metro PD||18-1177439||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way - white, 2003 Ford Crown Victoria.|
|Metro PD||17-1156358||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way - white Ford E250.|
|Metro PD||18-1175604||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way - Suburban GL Station Wagon|
|Metro PD||16-1145115||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way - Chrysler Sebring|
|Metro PD||17-1170892||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way - 2003 BMW|
|Metro PD||17-1168160||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way - 1998 Honda Accord.|
|Metro PD||17-1167401||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way|
|Metro PD||17-1167400||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way|
|Metro PD||16-1142553||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way|
|Metro PD||16-1144510||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way|
|Metro PD||16-1144513||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way|
|Metro PD||17-1167402||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way|
|Metro PD||16-1144739||Abandoned vehicle on the right of way|
|Metro PD||18-1175606||Abandoned vehicle on right of way.|
|Metro PD||18-1175605||Abandoned vehicle on right of way - red KIA Sportage.|
|Metro PD||17-1154579||Abandoned vehicle on right of way - Honda Civic.|
|Metro PD||17-1155150||Abandoned vehicle on right of way - Chevy S10 truck - vehicle has been stripped|
|Metro PD||18-1173858||Abandoned vehicle on right of way|
|Metro PD||16-1142556||Abandoned vehicle on right of way|
|Metro PD||17-1172766||Abandoned vehicle (Ford Windstar Van) on the right of way.|
|Metro PD||16-1149929||Abandoned vehicle (Black Mercedes) on the right of way.|
|Metro PD||16-1149927||Abandoned vehicle (2004 Jeep SUV) on the right of way.|
|Metro PD||17-1159946||Abandoned vehicle - Toyota - black - TN Lic 922 DD96, on flats.|
|Metro PD||16-1146442||Abandoned vehicle - Silver Nissan 350Z|
|Metro PD||16-1146444||Abandoned vehicle - Silver Dodge Grand Caravan|
|Metro PD||17-1161072||Abandoned vehicle - parked in wrong direction.|
|Metro PD||17-1161069||Abandoned Vehicle - parked in front of the church.|
|Metro PD||18-1185325||Abandoned vehicle - on two flats|
|Metro PD||17-1159947||Abandoned vehicle - Oldsmobile|
|Metro PD||17-1161074||Abandoned vehicle - jeep Cherokee Lic# E94 49N|
|Metro PD||18-1183756||Abandoned vehicle - Infiniti - TN T89 42J|
|Metro PD||16-1145114||Abandoned vehicle - Ford F-150 pickup on two flats|
|Metro PD||16-1146439||Abandoned vehicle - Black Mercedes Benz|
|Metro PD||16-1146440||Abandoned vehicle - Black GMC Denali|
|Metro PD||17-1156900||Abandoned truck on the side of the road|
|Metro PD||16-1147881||Abandoned Toyota Corolla on flats|
|Metro PD||16-1147880||Abandoned Saturn SUV blocking fire hydrant|
|Metro PD||16-1145365||Abandoned motor vehicle on the right of way.|
|Metro PD||16-1145148||Abandoned motor vehicle on right of way|
|Metro PD||16-1145018||Abandoned Hyundai on right of way|
|Metro PD||16-1144511||Abandoned furniture and trash all through back yard - house is unsecure - deck in rear has holes|
|Metro PD||18-1185872||Abandoned Ford Tarus|
|Metro PD||16-1147882||Abandoned Chevy Malibu on right of way|
|Metro PD||16-1147883||Abandoned Chevy Astro Van on right of way|
|Metro PD||17-1155347||Abandoned bus on the right of way.|
|Metro PD||18-1185327||Abandoned 2008 Volvo C70|
|Metro PD||17-1159944||Abandoned / wrecked vehicle on roadway - TN Tag 1A9 9K6 - black Nissan pickup (license number may not be correct).|
|Metro PD||17-1161070||Abandoned - fire damaged blue Toyota.|