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MONDAY, MAY 7, 2007
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Bíham homeless camps face evictions

BIRMINGHAM (AP) — Homeless people camped beneath Birminghamís overpasses and railways were warned to move out before the city evicts them this week.

Don Lupo, director of the Mayorís Office of Citizens Assistance, said the city is responding to requests from railroad officials and the Alabama Department of Transportation.

Lupo said highway and railroad officials want the people removed because they are trespassing on private property.

Violence, petty thefts and unsanitary conditions in the camps also are factors in the decision to remove them, Lupo said.

Many of the people living on the property are not accused of offenses that warrant arrest, Lupo said.

Peter and Greer McCoy, who live in an elaborate hut under Interstate 65, and neighbor Frank Watts, who lives in a meager hut across the field, say the police and railroad security used to check on them to make sure they were all right. The relationship has changed, Watts said.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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