Council to look into group home ordinances after complaints

Sunday Times Newspapers

WYANDOTTE – City councilors are looking for stricter ordinances to apply to group homes after numerous complaints about residents of one on Kings HIghway.

Councilman Todd Browning Monday requested City Attorney William Look investigate ordinances regarding youth homes in neighboring cities after residents who live near one at 395 Kings Highway spoke at city council meetings about problems they’ve had with residents from the home wandering into their yards.

The home, run by Southfield-based Trustcare Group Home Inc., has been visited by police 41 times since 2008 and by the Fire Department 21 times since then, for issues including loitering and foul language, residents wandering into nearby yards and thefts from vehicles parked nearby.

Police also responded May 4 when a visitor to the home was attacked and knocked to the ground.

In a letter to the council read at the their Tuesday meeting, Police Chief Daniel Grant said he met with one resident who voiced complaints at a June 4 Council meeting and the home’s owner June 15. The letter said the owner, Bose Ogbeifun, agreed to address supervision issues in the home and said a specific resident mentioned in the June 4 Council meeting was no longer at the home.

Wyandotte City Clerk William Griggs, who lives near the group home, said he has seen some of the problems, a result of “a real lack of supervision,” firsthand.

“They certainly have rights and they are entitled to all rights that are granted to them,” Griggs said. “But they do need supervision.”

Councilors also requested to be updated on future police and fire calls to the home. Councilman Leonard Sabuda, however, said since group homes fall under the authority of the state, the council may have to appeal to legislators in Lansing.

“If they are going to ring up 21 calls … something has to be done … with the legislative people in Lansing that have direct access to people that run that,” Sabuda said.