Thursday, 14 June 2018 16:25

Controversy brewing over crackdown on 'Tent City' Featured

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BANGOR - Bangor's police are getting the word out to the homeless: It's time to move.

There is disagreement, however, on the need to dismantle the tents.

 

"There's tent sites down here. They keep it clean. I mean, it's not a bad place," said Brandon Gurski, a resident of the riverfront homeless community some refer to as "Tent City."

 

Police say the community has not been without its share of turmoil.

 

"We've had some pretty tough situations on the waterfront before. Just with the violent assaults, the alcohol consumption, which is pretty high, and the drug overdoses," Bangor police Lt. Robert Bishop said.

 

The residents of so-called Tent City come from all walks of life and all corners of the country.

 

"All of these people are helping me. So for them to come down here and kick everybody out. You know, that's not okay. We're ain't bothering nobody," said Nicholas Blundun, also a resident.

 

Since 2009, three people have been murdered along the waterfront. Most recently, a man and woman were burned to death in March of this year.

 

"We want to make sure there are no violent situations down there. That's what brings us. It is public safety for everybody," Bishop said.

 

At least one Tent City resident said that is police harassment but others think otherwise.

 

"The city don't want to do it. I know because I've seen their sympathy, but they take it," Tent City resident Cajun Bob said.

 

Some tent city residents say they'll move along without causing any trouble, including Shane, who did not provide his last name.

 

"When they give us the notice, I will pick up my stuff. And I will disappear. But where will I go? Are they going to harassment me the next time?" he said.

 

There are shelters in Bangor, but some of the homeless reject the rules. Others prefer to live this life, including Blundun.

 

"This is my new family. They're going to always be my family. You know it. And I'm going to love them death. And I love this," he said.

 

 

 

TJ Tremble

Reporter
[email protected]

T.J. Tremble joined WVII ABC 7 and WFVX FOX 22 in March 2016.

He was raised in Bangor, attended Bangor schools and graduated from John Bapst High School. He attended the University of Maine, studying political scienc...