AUGUSTA — An Augusta house that officials said was full of garbage and human waste was demolished Tuesday by a local construction crew.

The unsafe living conditions at the house at 68 Windy St. were discovered in August when police and firefighters went to the home to check on the owner after a caller reported she had not shown for an appointment.

Officials found her unresponsive on the floor, according to court documents, and took her to MaineGeneral Medical Center.

Authorities believe the living conditions at the house contributed to the health issues that required the woman to be hospitalized.

Robert Overton, director of code enforcement for the city, said the house was filled with garbage and human waste. He said the home had water and sewer hooked up, but the home’s bathroom facilities were not usable.

He said the city determined the house, which was in a subdivision, was a public health nuisance. City officials had the building secured and then sought — and won — a court order to have the building removed.


The homeowner did not contest the city’s order in court, and she and a representative of Five County Credit Union, which held what Overton said was a small mortgage on the dwelling, signed off on documents to allow the demolition to proceed.

Overton said the woman, who he estimated is in her 60s,  said she was not physically able to remove the trash from her home.

“She didn’t seem to have a lot of support around her to help with things,” Overton said. “It’s really sad. Sad that this could happen in this neighborhood. Sad that it could happen at all.”

The city of Augusta had a local construction company demolish the house at 68 Windy St. on Tuesday.

He said the woman seemed nice and did not fight the city’s actions at any point. Neighbors also told Overton she seemed nice. They also said she never seemed to have visitors. He said he was also told she was having trouble getting in-home services because of the condition of the home.

He said odors from the home reached the street, and neighboring yards.

Court documents filed by the city indicated furniture, household items, garbage and other debris nearly covered the entire floor area of the house and extended upward as much as 5 feet.


They said there was contamination from food waste and biohazards on the walls and floors, conditions there would be attractive for mice and rats, and that the structure posed a serious risk for fire.

Documents indicated Fire Chief Roger Audette, who viewed the house Aug. 30, advised that no city officials should enter the structure due to safety conerns and biohazards inside.

However, Overton said, the city never received any complaints about the house.

The homeowner, who Overton said is in a rehabilitation facility, could not be reached for comment. She signed a court document Sept. 17 admitting her house was a dangerous building and authorizing the city to remedy the situation by demolishing and removing the structure and its contents.

The demolition was delayed for 30 days to give the woman time to remove items, such as sentimental keepsakes or heirlooms.

A caseworker working with the homeowner testified the woman had the capability to make her own decisions about where she would live and the ability to determine whether she should sign court documents allowing the demolition to proceed. She also assured him she would work with the woman to help her secure safe housing.

A crew from Quirion Construction Inc. of Augusta demolished the single-story, 1,000-square-foot house, which assessing records show was built in 1981. The property was assessed for tax purposes at $96,700, with the building assessed at $60,700 and its .46-acre yard at $36,000.

Overton said the upper part of the house would be demolished, but some of the flooring contained asbestos so that would have to be abated. He said even the concrete slab of the home would be removed because it had been contaminated with liquids. He said its frost walls may be able to be reused for a new structure.

The homeowner will be billed for the city’s demolition costs. The property will be returned to her after the structure and remaining contents are removed.

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