I-TEAM: Owner of leaking apartment building has history of safety issues

Investigation found Springfield Apartments nearly failed HUD inspection in June

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Following an I-TEAM report on renter’s rights last week, News4Jax received dozens of calls and emails from viewers.

One came from a family who had their ceiling fall in because of a leak they said they’ve reported for months.

News4Jax found the owners of the government-subsidized apartment complex has a pattern of safety issues at their other properties in 2019.

Shakeira Hailey and her three kids live at the Springfield Apartments. While she’s been taking care of her one-month-old – she’s also been dealing with a caved-in ceiling leaking water all over her home.

Aaron Baker, the father of the children, said the sink has been backed up for weeks and water leaks in the bedrooms destroyed their kids’ furniture.

“We have a little boy, a little girl and we just had a baby girl and she’s like one month and I don’t want her to live like this and I don’t know if this mold will make her sick. We just want to do a little better than this,” Baker said.

Baker said they have been mixing their baby’s formula with store-bought water – and bathing their children at their grandparent’s house.

“They turn the water off in the bathroom and just patch it up and once they turn the water back on a couple of weeks later in falls back in again,” he said.

The apartment complex is owned by The Millennia Companies.

The Ohio-based company purchased Springfield Apartments in 2018 along with six other properties from Global Ministries Foundation after several News4Jax I-TEAM reports on the conditions of the housing.

Since then, one of the apartments had a fire that led to seven people being hospitalized.

Another complex they own was without natural gas for weeks while crews replaced the gas lines after several gas leaks were found.

News4Jax found Springfield Apartments nearly failed a HUD inspection with a score of 66 in June.

Baker is hoping to get help with the leaks or move his family out soon.

“We are trying to do the best we can. We want to move somewhere else, but we just can’t afford it right now. I’m in school and she doesn’t have a job,” Baker said.

News4Jax reached out to The Millennia Companies on Tuesday to see how they’re responding but have yet to hear back.

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