Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Binghamton Mayor Rich David, as well as officials from the Town and Country Apartments, respond to the Friday shooting at the complex, where a 19-year-old was shot.
The teen, Scott Wright, Jr., died early Monday morning from his injuries.
In a news release, Jesse Bailey, owner of the apartments at 100 Roberts St., offered condolences to all families affected by the incident.
In a phone interview with Bailey Thursday night, he said the complex does not deserve to be shut down, since they have not violated any codes previously.
"We've never had anything that's escalated to this point since I've owned it [Town and Country] for six or seven years," said Bailey. "So we're very chagrined that the mayor had the audacity to say this. And I think if the police were a little more vigilant, and there was police at the adjacent area, we wouldn't have any problem at our apartment complex as well."
According to Binghamton Mayor Rich David, police have responded to the apartment complex 1,545 times in the last six years, including calls for homicide.
Total police calls since Jan. 1, 2008:
2014: 169 (Jan. 1 - July 11)
“Management must take responsibility and become more engaged with the daily activities of the property in order to address the serious problems that exist,” said Mayor David. “There have been more calls to police so far this year than in all of 2008. On average, over the course of the last six years, police have responded almost every single day. The Binghamton Police Department is not a private security firm.”
Bailey stated neither accused gunman Andre Lee or Wright Jr. were tenants at Town and Country.
According to the Broome County Jail, however, Lee's living address is listed as the Town and Country Apartments.
Bailey said a relative of Lee's is a registered tenant and there are no legal documents with Lee as a tenant.
The mayor said tenants or not, the place is still a center for crime.
“The management of this facility — or lack thereof — is clearly a contributing factor to the type of activity occurring on the premises,” said Mayor David. “Regardless whether it’s the tenants who are involved in the crimes, the complex has become a magnet for criminal activity. It is the city’s intention to hold the owners and management accountable for the activities that are taking place and work with them to address the problems head-on.”
Bailey said he and his attorneys intend on meeting with members of the city's administration sometime next week.
Mayor David said the focus is now on public safety, and the city will be looking into a lockdown at certain units, not the entire complex.
“The city is exploring a number of different strategies to address the activities that are taking place at Town & Country Apartments,” said Mayor David. “Our focus on public safety is comprehensive. The Lockdown Law is not a universal solution that’s applicable in every situation. As the city reviews eligibility of applying the Lockdown Law, I want to assure residents that Town & Country Apartments as a whole is not in danger of being locked down. We are reviewing the activities to determine if lockdown action can be taken at select units to protect and improve the quality of life for other tenants, as well as nearby residents on the North Side.”
Bailey will be hosting a meeting with Town and Country residents on Monday evening.