An Atlantic Beach apartment complex could be forced to closed down, tenants not happy


    Ocean Apartments/WPDE

    People who live in the Ocean Apartments on 31st Avenue South in Atlantic Beach could soon be looking for somewhere else to live.

    Hundreds of complaints have been called in to police regarding drug use in the complex and the 15th Circuit Solicitor's office has deemed the complex a nuisance.

    However, those who live there say not everyone should have to suffer if the place is ordered by a judge to be shut down.

    "Everybody don't sell drugs, everybody don't do drugs, everybody don't sell drugs, everybody not on drugs," said Christopher-Travis Drumgoole, who lives in Ocean Apartments.

    All the recent attention claiming the apartment complex is a nuisance and riddled with crime is really hitting a nerve now that the 15th Circuit Solicitor wants a judge to shut the place down.

    "Y'all did your job shutting it down, shutting the drugs down, alright, leave it alone now, it's done, keep monitoring it whatever you got to do, do your job but that's it, don't take it too far," said Drumgoole.

    15th Circuit Solicitor Jimmy Richardson said for the last six months he's received complaints from people in the area, but said the decision of what to do with those complaints isn't solely up to him.

    "I funnel all of those calls back to the police station, the vast majority of times it's not only the police and the neighbors saying go-ahead. A lot of times it's the land owner, and maybe even the building owner, saying yes, I wish you would've come earlier," said Richardson.

    Both Atlantic Beach and Horry County police were part of a recent undercover investigation back in November of 2018 at the complex, which lead to multiple arrests and drug seizures.

    "It's something that we don't take lightly. It's something that we don't try to do much at all, but it's got ramifications beyond the defendants," said Richardson.

    Parents with children in the area said they see what goes down on 31st Avenue South and they aren't willing to take any chances with their kid's safety.

    "Being that her bus stop is all the way up the street, you know what I'm saying, I have to take her back and forth when she's old enough to walk by herself, but you know, I know that drugs in the area and I don't want to risk her walking by there and, you know, maybe getting picked up or anything," said Tateya McCollum, who lives in Atlantic Beach.

    Richardson said he hopes this serves as a learning lesson to land and business owners across the Grand Strand who aren't keeping up with what's happening on their properties.

    "The ones that aren’t doing right would learn from this and say, 'Oh my goodness, I don't want my doors closed down," said Richardson.

    A judge will make a decision of whether or not to shut the complex down for an entire year next month.

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