The ongoing foreclosure crisis is leading to a lot of vacant homes in Jacksonville, One result of those vacant homes is crime.
Homes that are left vacant for months at a time worry the Jacksonville neighbors Channel 4 spoke with Monday night.
"I do think there's possibly drug activity going on," said Springfield resident Whitney Sutton. "Possibly selling drugs or dealing drugs, that concerns me."
When Mayor Alvin Brown hosted a public meeting with residents of Springfield a couple of weeks ago, one concern of residents was the amount of vacant homes on a section of Liberty Street. Residents told the mayor that home after home was boarded up.
Channel 4 found five vacant homes on just one block in the Springfield area. Residents believe the vacant homes lead to crime, and that was the case just last week when a young teen was kidnapped and sexually battered inside a vacant home on the Westside.
The City of Jacksonville told Channel 4 Monday night that the foreclosure crisis is primarily to blame, and that the city doesn't have much authority in the matter.
In an email the city explained, "We cannot cite a house because no one resides in the structure."
The City of Jacksonville can only stop in if the bushes or grass is overgrown or there are no boards, and there are windows and doors left open in the home.
Channel 4's Crime Analyst, Ken Jefferson, said neighbors should keep an eye on any abandoned homes in their neighborhoods.
"If you live around an abandoned home or boarded up home, make sure you check it from time to time, call police anytime anyone is around that area. If they look suspicious, call police," said Jefferson.