Call the Police

November 26th, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

Sometimes a code violation is so serious that it demands more than the usual citation.  In a recent case in Ontario, Cananda a landlord pleaded guilty to fire code violations after an explosion severely burnt a person in a residence converted to a rooming house. The defendant was placed on probation but could have received jail.  We should not forget that in some cases, the situation may cry out for criminal penalties.  In Illinois we have a criminal housing management statute which probably isn’t used as often as it could be.   It’s important for code officials to have a strong working relationship with the local governmental agency’s police department so law enforcement doesn’t hesitate to become involved when it should.  The police are not going to investigate unless a complaint is made and the code official assists the police in understanding how bad the circumstances are.  It is important to deter landlords who try to save money by gambling with tenants’ lives.

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