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Vacant home where girl was raped should have been boarded up

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) – The vacant house where a 12-year-old was viciously attacked and raped had numerous complaints filed against it and should have been boarded up long before that crime occurred, but the city dragged its feet.

Citizens had filed 13 complaints against the residence in the 5300 block of Terry Street, which is a owned by a bank.

Many of the complaints involved trash or overgrown vegetation, but three of the complaints involved the house not being properly boarded up.

The last such complaint about the house being open was filed November 29, about 5-1/2 weeks before the little girl was assaulted.

Under normal procedures, the city alerts the property owner. If the problem isn't taken care of, the city will board up the building and send the bill to the owners.

The head of the city’s building division said board-up crews were busy and didn't get to the house in time to board it up before the attack.