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A woman in her early 20s stands on the steps of the Bainbridge. She wears a red track jacket over a white T-shirt. On the T-shirt is a picture of a young man, his red hat tilted to the side, lying on his side, propped up on one elbow. Below the image is his name and date of death. The woman refuses to give her name and says she doesn't live in the building.
Bainbridge Resident: "You ain't scared being here? You got a gun, you got anything on you? You better have something if you coming around here. You can leave right now or get shot."
A day after this exchange, Ashley Thomas, 25, and her unidentified boyfriend were shot in their car at the intersection outside the Bainbridge. The boyfriend survived, but Thomas, nine months pregnant, died at the hospital. When the boyfriend regained consciousness, he identified the shooter as Calvin A. Boswell, who has been charged with two counts of second-degree murder, four counts of armed criminal action, and two counts of first-degree murder.
Holman Shooting Witness: "People don't want to get involved for one reason or another. They don't want to be a snitch. I'm a mother and I wouldn't want my son to be left alone in the middle of the street. ... The other people who'd come out were thanking me and apologizing for taking up my time. Someone's dying, and they were used to it and apologizing to me."
At 62, Gene Morgan has some of the deepest roots in the neighborhood. His parents and grandparents lived in Hyde Park most of their lives. Of those who agree to speak with The Pitch, Morgan is also the only neighborhood association member who says he has had direct experience with crime in the area.
Morgan: "I've had three burglaries. The first time, they didn't steal anything. At first, I was mad they broke in — then I was mad they didn't think we had anything worth stealing. The second time, they trashed the place. Then there was another two years ago. From what I gather, it was a couple of high-school kids looking for video games, and we didn't have any, so they ended up snatching a couple of worthless things. My wife was physically assaulted in 1980 while walking home, but she talked her way out of it. I had a car stolen out of my driveway. It was found parked behind Paseo High School. We've had cars parked in the street with the windows kicked in. Then there was a lawnmower stolen out of the garage. We used to hear shots, and you'd immediately hear a police alarm, but it seems like you don't hear the police alarm now."
Kimmis: "There's been a lot of property mismanagement. Lots of out-of-town owners that don't care. Yes, MAC is renovating properties, and they are from Chicago, but there's a difference because they're renovating properties at market value, and the rest are subsidizing properties as Section 8. Eagle Point's people live in a very wealthy part of Maine, and I don't think they're worried about what happens in Hyde Park."
Todd Alexander is managing director of Eagle Point. He says buying the properties was a $60 million transaction. HUD had had existing Section 8 contracts requiring anyone who bought the properties to honor a 20-year contract that would keep 303 units designated as Section 8 housing.