Authorities cleared a homeless camp Wednesday morning on private property near Franklin Avenue and New Road after complaints from nearby businesses.

Waco police led efforts Monday morning to remove people camping in a wooded area near Waco Creek and a railroad, asking them to leave the property. Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton said police had received several complaints about homeless residents that had been staying on the private property. McLennan County Sheriff’s Office deputies also joined the effort.

“We found recovered items, like umbrellas from eateries around the area, and the homeless people are becoming a crime issue for the businesses in the neighborhood, according to district supervisors,” Swanton said. “We did give the homeless residents several days notice to vacate the area.”

Swanton said there were still several homeless people at the site Wednesday morning.

“There are no restroom facilities back there, so human waste and trash, like old mattresses, was becoming an issue,” Swanton said. “Anytime we have an issue to the magnitude that this one was causing with thefts that were stemming from local businesses and being on private property, we are going to keep doing something about that. Today we did something about that.”

Those who were removed from the property were encouraged to seek other resources throughout the city, Swanton said. One subject was arrested for outstanding warrants, but no one was arrested in connection to the law enforcement effort, he said.

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Kristin Hoppa has been covering public safety and breaking news for the Tribune-Herald since January 2016. She worked in Northwest Missouri covering crime-related issues before her move to Central Texas. She is a University of Kansas graduate.

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