Court records detail not only Timothy Virts potential for violence but also the custody agreements for parenting the children he had with murder victim Bobbie Joe Cortez.
BALTIMORE - They painted murals to shine a light on blighted Baltimore buildings and the people who own them. Now a woman involved with the project is being sued for it.
ABC2 News Investigators told you about the lawsuit before Christmas. This week a woman who lives near one of the homes involved in the lawsuit reacts.
Liquor bottles litter the lawn of 539 North Longwood St. Crumbling bricks tumble out the side of the home and the front porch roof sags. It's a place neighbors won't hesitate to call an eyesore.
"It's been like a nightmare," Shawniece Smith, who lives in the house next door, said.
Smith has lived next door for more than six years. In that time, she says she's felt the impact of neglect.
"That's got me fearful because it's connected to me. I feel like it's a domino effect. If one thing falls it's going to trickle down the line."
Smith has watched the property next door fall to pieces, telling ABC2 little has been done to stop its demise. But as this property rots, action is finally being taken -- not to fix it but to cover up a mural, placed here to shine a light on the blight.
In December, the business trust that owns the home filed a lawsuit, claiming the property was damaged by the art, calling it vandalism done with malice.
"I think if anyone has malice, it's the person who owns these properties and doesn't fix them up," she said.
The lawsuit claims Ott directed the Wall Hunters: Slumlord Project , choosing which Baltimore properties street artists would paint. She tells ABC2 that's not true. Ott considers the lawsuit an annoyance, saying she believes she'll win because she simply handed over public record information about who owns the properties.
"But for me it's not really about winning this battle. It's about telling residents you don't have to put up with this kind of blight in your community," Ott said.
The lawsuit includes estimates from a contractor ABC2 investigators discovered is unlicensed. Those documents claim it will cost $2,500 to paint over the mural on Longwood Street. Another similar lawsuit mentions a mural painted on Old York Road, using a mirror estimate with the same cost.
Shawniece Smith says those thousands could be better spent by the property owner.
"If you've got time to recognize that, then you've got time to recognize that place is falling apart and needs attention. Immediately," she said.
Brian Spern, the attorney who represents the two business trusts that have filed suit, wouldn't say which individuals make up the trust. He refused to explain why the trusts sought estimates from a contractor who is not licensed to do business in the state of Maryland.
Ott has not yet been served with court papers.
"It hurts, it hurts,” Michael Marion said. “Sometimes I just want to close my eyes when I go by. That way maybe it's not there, but it's there and every day we go by it, my boys see it every day, their bus goes by it every day."
Maryland hit-and-run reports by the numbers
Maryland's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene has weighed in on a bill that asks Maryland hospitals with an ER to provide forensic exams for victims of sexual assault.
Lawmakers Friday introduced a bill in Annapolis that would place the responsibility on Maryland hospitals to provided certified forensic nurses for rape victims.
When a person is sexually assaulted, a clock starts ticking for evidence collection.
When a victim is raped, convincing them to go to the hospital can be tough. That’s just the first hard step after a horrific trauma.
This searchable database breaks down the number and dollar amount associated with rape kit reimbursements at certified Maryland hospitals.
Stats on hospital rape kit reimbursement claims 2011-2013.
An investigation has revealed serious safety concerns about one of the most popular children's toys on the market that is still being sold in stores despite consumer calls for a recall.