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Utility Crew Cuts Down Trees Leaving Logs, Branches And Stumps In Residents' Yards

AURORA, Ill. (CBS) -- Two Aurora homeowners now have backyards covered in chopped up tree stumps and limbs. AT&T cut down the trees down weeks ago but then left all the debris behind.

CBS 2's Jackie Kostek tried to get to the root of the problem and figure out whose responsibility the removal is.

A couple of weeks ago a bad storm rolled through Aurora.

"The neighbor in back of me had two large trees fall on AT&T's telephone pole," longtime Aurora resident Archie Fritsch said.

Fritsch's internet went out, so he called AT&T. About three days later, someone came to check it out.

"The AT&T guy says, 'I can't touch it. It's got a tree hanging on the pole,'" Fritsch said.

He went back to his supervisor.

"And the supervisor comes out a few days later and he says, 'We have to get a crew out to correct this,'" Fritsch said.

The crew came out.

"Cuts the trees down and dumps it in my yard," he went on. "They leave it."

When the tree trimmers left, they didn't just leave Fritsch with a stray branch or two. They left him with massive chunks of logs scattered across his lawn from two different trees and even all of the branches with leaves still attached. But it wasn't just Archie's property that was left with these trees. His neighbor was, too.

"Well, I got a whole stack of bushes here, trimmings from the trees they cut down, so they just stacked it over here in a nice pile," said Chester Rogers.

Rogers is 81 years old, six years older than his longtime neighbor Fritsch . He doesn't like to stay on his feet too long, much less remove branches from trees that weren't his -- or Fritsch's in the first place.

"I'm not inclined to think it's my responsibility to move all this garbage around," he said. "They need to move it out."

So whose responsibility is it? Archie says AT&T told him the city should remove the branches. The city told him they don't remove trees from people's property.

"I'm stuck right now. Between a rock and a hard spot," he said. "I wish I had a fireplace."

Late Friday, AT&T said they have asked the contractor to return to Fritsch's home and remove the debris.

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