Letters to the Editor: Landlords sparked L.A.’s overcrowding crisis. They got an assist from leaders of other apartment buildings, which had similar problems. Why did we do nothing, you ask? Why did we do nothing?
On Nov. 24, the Los Angeles Times published an excellent series of articles and letters about the housing crisis in which a former housing inspector, Richard E. Brown, was quoted as saying that his findings that tenants had been turned away from the city’s only apartment complex because they were not “fully loaded” led to widespread complaints at city hall.
But that story was not the end of the story, according to a letter written by several tenants in the Los Angeles apartment building where Richard E. Brown and his wife, Karen S. Brown, were working. They said the Times’s Nov. 24 story would be the start of a trend toward “more restrictive and harsher evictions” in the city’s other apartment buildings.
This would lead to a serious problem: “the lack or lack of sufficient housing” in South Los Angeles.
The letter, dated Dec. 5, was written by Lisa A. Harris, who was renting an apartment in the apartments at 1630 West Spring St. and 1660 W. Spring St. The letters were written in response to the Times’ Nov. 24 stories on the two other apartment buildings in South Los Angeles and on the issue of a proposed housing development in Los Angeles.
The letter was signed by a group of tenants from one of the other two apartment buildings, all of whom lived in the apartments when they were in the buildings.
They said that the Times’ Nov. 24 articles would bring more harassment, fear and danger into their already unsafe apartments and that they were now looking for the Times to hold the developer of the new housing development responsible.
They said they were glad a former housing inspector, Richard E. Brown, was quoted in the piece as saying: “I think the lack of availability of housing is one of the key reasons why the demand for apartments never really went down.”
The Times published two more stories about the two apartment buildings on Dec. 5 and Dec. 6. The Times story, by staff writer Michael Hiltzik, said that the former housing inspector, “sp