Imagine looking out the window of your apartment, sitting in your backyard or taking a stroll, and having an eyesore of a junk yard stare back at you.
Residents of Lantern Hill Apartments and homeowners who live behind the Woodmoor Shopping Center on Sedgemoor and Hillsmere roads in Lochearn get a view of a dirt lot with dozens of junked vehicles, stacks of old tires and parts. Even storage containers, tow trucks and old trailers sit on the property. Tarp hanging on the chain link fence that surrounds the lot does little to hide the junk from the view of passersby and residents.
Business owner Maimouna Bagayoko says that she rents the property and parks wrecked vehicles, dissembles them and ships the parts to her native Mali, Africa. No elected official or community member has talked to her about their concerns, she says. When Baltimore County Police frequently stop by the lot to check the vehicles’ identification numbers, she explains to them she does not have stolen property.
Bagayoko says she received a $6,000 fine. She plans to move in a few weeks, she said.
According to one complaint filed with the department, “[The lot] is a breeding ground for rodent, criminals and trash. The eyesore has and will force property values to decline. This junkyard never should have come into existence.” Another complaint alleged that there is no resident agent to oversee the property.
County Councilman Julian Jones, who represents District 4, which includes the Woodlawn area, is holding a community meeting Thursday, Feb. 15, at 7 p.m. in Randallstown Community Center. A representative from Code Enforcement will be present to outline the reporting, inspection and enforcement process.