Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Where's Ben Holder's Heritage House Pictures?

Ben Holder loves taking pictures. It helps him to prove his point. For example: when Ben Holder turned in Greensboro City Councilwoman Nancy Hoffmann for violating the Downtown Good Repair Ordinance the News & Record reported:

"The citations came after complaints to the city from local activist and blogger Ben Holder.

Holder took pictures of Hoffmann’s buildings at 534 S. Elm St. and 109 W. Lewis St., posted them on his blog and confronted Hoffmann about them in a speech at Tuesday night’s City Council meeting.

“You can’t just walk around like you’re holier than thou,” Holder said in an interview Wednesday."

But apparently, if your name is Ben Holder you can walk around like you're holier than thou.

You see, Ben had a problem. The entire Heritage House property, all 5.87 acres is posted no trespassing. For Ben and the other 4 people who signed the petition that was used by the City of Greensboro to secure a warrant to inspect the inside of the property, Ben and the 4 others had to trespass on private property in order to actually witness the conditions they were claiming existed there as neither Ben nor any of the others had ever lived there.

To sign such a petition without having actually seen such property is in-fact, perjury as this petition was used to secure multiple warrants. And if Ben produces pictures then he and the others face possible charges of trespassing to be added to the 34 pages of criminal records Ben already has.

And if Ben and his merry gang of mercenary code enforcement inspectors really did go to Heritage House then where are the pictures? Perjury is a far more serious crime than trespassing.

To make matters worse, when the Code Enforcement Department of the City of Greensboro went to serve the warrant and inspect the properties they apparently didn't take any pictures either. How do I know that? Because when our team submitted a public information request to the City of Greensboro asking for pictures their reply was:

"Thank you for your public records request regarding Heritage House pictures.
Unfortunately, there are no records that correspond to the dates referenced in your request (July). Therefore, the City has no records in response to your request.
Please let me know if you need anything else.
Sarah Healy
Sarah B. Healy, Public Records Administrator
Communications Division - 336-373-3282
City of Greensboro
PO Box 3136, Greensboro, NC 27402-3136

I'm awaiting a similar request for pictures from June.

There's still questions to be asked and answered and yes we'll ask them. As a matter of fact: we probably already have.