City to clean up South Austin encampment after homeless person throws rock at home

In the early morning hours of Dec. 2, Kayvon Rashidi and his girlfriend woke up to the sound of someone screaming. Then they hear a loud crash. 

It wasn’t until they watched their security camera footage that they realized someone had come onto their property, picked up a rock from their garden and thrown it at their front door.

"It was actually probably an inch away from hitting the glass," said Rashidi. "We got lucky there."

The South Austin resident said police responded quickly, and he was grateful for that. However, after locating the person responsible at a nearby homeless encampment, according to Rashidi, police told him they couldn't arrest the person. He said he was told the most they could do would be to charge the person with a Class C misdemeanor

"I spent the rest of the night watching out for my property, and I could see them still causing some havoc in the street," said Rashidi. "At the gas station (across the street) there's a food truck they were kind of destroying as well." 

The frustration goes beyond the one incident for Rashidi and his girlfriend. This isn’t the first time they’ve had issues after the homeless camp settled in within about 100 yards. 

Rashidi said they’ve found used needles and seen people defecating on the sidewalk. Some of the homeless people they've interacted with have been hostile. 

Another neighbor FOX 7 spoke to voiced similar concerns. Rashidi said efforts to get the camp moved hadn't gone anywhere.

"I called 311 a number of times, and I made several complaints on the app as well," said Rashidi, who also called 911 a number of times.

On Tuesday, FOX 7 reached out to APD as well as the councilmember for Rashidi’s district. On Wednesday, Rashidi said he got a call from both.

Councilmember Ann Kitchen’s office also sent FOX 7 a statement that said, "My office has followed up with city staff and the resident and have informed him APD has assigned officers and a detective to the case, and the HOST and PATH teams will be addressing the encampment."

Rashidi was thankful for the calls and spoke highly of everyone he interacted with. However, he is cautiously optimistic about the future.

"[It’s not that] I don’t have sympathy with people who are unhoused or have mental illnesses, but it was apparent that something bad was going to happen and then this happened, and I didn’t feel like there was a whole lot of initial response," he said. "So the worry I have is, what is it going to take for someone to act pretty quickly?"