Atlanta

Survivors of Atlanta apartment complex fire to file class action lawsuit against property owners

ATLANTA — Victims of a large fire at an Atlanta apartment complex announced this weekend that they will be filing a class action lawsuit against five corporate entities that own the property.

Attorneys with Dean Thaxton LLC. held a news conference Saturday morning to announce their plans to file the lawsuit against the corporate entities that own the Resvere at LaVista Walk, an apartment complex devastated by fire a week ago.

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According to police, two people set off fireworks on the rooftop and started the fire. Three days later, crews were able to put out the blaze.

“We got out with our backpacks, our cats, and our cars, and that’s it,” Alyssa Greene, a complex resident, said.

During the news conference, attorneys listed several problems the complex has faced, including code and public safety violations. One of the problems they brought up was access to the roof in relation to the two accused of setting off fireworks.

“[The fire] totally could have been prevented. There is no reason people should have been allowed up there. The apartment knew people were going up there, children were going up there,” one attorney said.

Since the fire, the apartment complex has been deemed uninhabitable, but neighbors say it’s anything but vacant.

“You almost have to loot your own things back; that’s how bad it’s gotten,” one resident said.

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Although there are no trespassing signs posted, a fence put up and security guards monitoring the property, residents claim their homes continue to be looted.

Channel 2 Action News obtained a photo of a bag and electronics on the ground outside the complex and a video of an apartment ransacked.

“It has been frustrating trying to work with the insurance, trying to send them things. What was in the house, but the receipts are now gone or burned, and I do not have access to them,” Keshaun Jones, another resident, said. “There is a bunch of us who lost things. We have had looters. We are just asking for help.”

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Residents said they are also anxious to learn if they will be reimbursed for their November rent.

“It’s too late for the hundreds of us who called the Reserve home, but we hope to save tenants living in my landlord’s other properties the anguish of watching their home burn and knowing that their landlord failed in their most important duty: to maintain a safe property,” Greene said.

Channel 2 Action News reached out to the corporate entities who own the property but have not received a response.

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