City of Burlington to Disband Homeless Encampment on Sears Lane

Burlington, Vt. - Burlington police say a homeless encampment on Sears Lane will have to disband no earlier than the end of this week.

The City reviewed the issue, and says people living on public land there are trespassing.  Department heads and key personnel are working to decide an appropriate time and the best means to move people there, according to a release from Police Chief Brandon del Pozo.

The police department posted a notice back in September, warning of the possible closure of the encampment.

Police say this is a matter of safety, after reports of domestic violence, a dispute with a gun, vandalism, arson, and drug dealing. Neighbors have voiced their concerns, according to officials.  Because of these concerns, the city says trespassing on Sears Lane will no longer be tolerated.

The City will be in contact with people living there, and put them in contact with service providers. Authorities say the city's shelter will be expanding with the seasonal opening of its low-barrier shelter in the coming weeks.  Anything of value not removed will be stored by the city for safekeeping.


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