Man blames growing homeless camp for increasing crime in Museum District

HOUSTON – A man who lives in Houston’s Museum District said Tuesday he is fed up with the increasing crime rate in his neighborhood, which he blames on a nearby homeless camp that is growing.

Christopher Eriksen shared video recorded Sunday night from a surveillance camera at his home that he said recorded the sound of 15 gunshots followed by screeching tires.

“I didn’t know what to think,” Eriksen said. “I just jumped on the floor and called 911.”

VIDEO: Eriksen's surveillance video

There was a homicide in the area early Sunday, followed by the gunshots Eriksen recorded Sunday night. On Monday, he said, a woman used his yard as a toilet.

“Her toilet paper and her poop is still right outside the window,” Eriksen said.

Earlier this year, city leaders banned public camps like the one near Highway 59 and Wheeler Street, but a judge blocked it. However, Eriksen said, there are plenty of other laws being broken.

“I’ve seen prostitution or blatant drug use,” Eriksen said. “Drug dealing. People walking to the camps, I guess, to do their drugs, come out like zombies. They are doing snow angels in the street. They’re walking into traffic. They don’t know what they’re doing. They’re a harm to themselves and to people driving by.”

Crime statistics for the last six months show two violent robberies in the area, plus at least eight thefts or property crimes. That does not include Sunday morning’s homicide.

Eriksen said his requests for help have gotten the attention of both City Councilman Dwight Boykins and police Chief Art Acevedo.

About the Authors: