HOLLYWOOD HILLS—The Los Angeles Police Department and SWAT officials detained 64 people living illegally in a vacant building in Hollywood on Wednesday, September 13, at 4:30 a.m. It took officers several hours to search through all the rooms in the four-story building and remove all occupants inside.
The building is located at the 6300 block of Hollywood Boulevard and Cosmo Street. Authorities seized one shotgun and one rifle along with narcotics. The building was filled with the smell of human waste, trash all around the floors, pulled wires that were used as a means of electrical power since the building has no electricity, air mattresses, pillows, and blankets, the LAPD reported.
The Los Angeles Police Department took to Twitter to share several photos from inside the building along with the, ”We’ve seen the tragedies that can happen when people are living in illegal conditions. That’s why @LAPDHollywood dedicated months investigating an abandoned commercial building on Hollywood Blvd- this morning 62 adults, 4 juveniles, along with guns & drugs were found inside.”
Most of the people who were detained were released after being cited for trespassing. Several were taken into police custody who had warrants for their arrest.
According to the Los Angeles Times, several individuals who were living in the building informed authorities they had been paying the owner of the building monthly, while others said they would come and go.
The LA Times reported that the police raid was to prevent another tragedy like the Ghost Ship warehouse fire that occurred in Oakland in December 2016, where 36 people who were living inside an abandoned warehouse were killed after a fire.