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Demolition Mistake Leads To Wrong Home Being Torn Down In Historic Dallas Neighborhood

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - The owner of a demolition company says a mistake led a crew to tear down the wrong property in East Dallas.

According to neighbors, the 97 year old home at 5532 Richard Avenue was demolished quickly on Wednesday.

The crew had the wrong home though; the house is owned by a former Dallas resident who lives in California.

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(credit: CBSDFW.COM)

Jeremy Wenninger says a good friend of his used to live in the "pink house" (as it was known on the street). When the woman died three years ago, she left the property to him. Wenninger became the legal owner in 2019. Though he lives in Los Angeles, he says he was in the process of renovating the property.

On Wednesday, he got a call that a bulldozer was on the property and the house was being torn down.

Neighbor Zach Basich remembers, "I was pulling up just as the bulldozer and wrecking crew was getting out of here. Didn't think much of it just thought another permanent demolition in the neighborhood."

Another neighbor, David Walkington who also lives on Richard Avenue and knew the previous homeowner, says a number of homes in the Vickory Place neighborhood are being torn down or flipped. "The house is gone. That was a unique house built in the twenties."

wrong house demolished 2
(credit: CBSDFW.COM)

The owner of JR's Demolition, Bobby Lindamood, says it was a mistake. The company's crew was assigned to tear down another home on the same street.

Lindamood shared the following statement with CBS 11:

"JR's Demolition is a small family business who has been in the demolition business for15 years. I as the owner, have been in demolition over 35 years, and after 50,000 plus structure demolitions, this is the first incident wherein the wrong structure was demolished.

We made a mistake and thought we had the right property. Many homes on Richard street have been demolished by JR's and other demolition companies in connection with the current redevelopment and revitalization of this area. Unfortunately, this home did not have any house numbers on it and any street curb address was covered by water and debris from the recent heavy rain events. Nonetheless, JR's inspected this property ensuring that it was empty. The house was stripped of all plumbing and electrical. It lacked a foundation without concrete, and the gas meter was gone. The rear door was boarded up and lacked a non-operational front door. The front yard was covered with cut trees debris just as any demo house is before demolition. Neighboring workers stated the property had vagrants and has been vacant since October last year. In short, the property was similar in appearance and condition to many of the properties that JR's demolished on Richard Street.

We spoke with the new owner of the property who acquired it in 2019 and will be working with him toward a resolution."

Lindamood also says some local builders have offered to pay cash for the lot.

But Wenninger isn't looking for another home. He says when the World War Era Craftsman was torn down he lost sentimental value, and he hopes the resolution reached can honor that.

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