Police chief says Northampton homeless camp “not a threat to public safety”

Northampton residents have been questioning the safety of homeless camps in the city

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Neighbors have been complaining about a homeless camp in Northampton.

Northampton Police Chief Jody Kasper told 22News the camps have been in the city for about 20 years. Despite recent reports, she said these camps aren’t a safety threat.

“It’s not new to Northampton, we’ve had homeless camps for as long as I can remember,” Chief Kasper said.

Northampton residents have been questioning the safety of homeless camps in the city. Within the last month, a stabbing has occurred at the homeless camp on Texas Road.

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“They ruin things they don’t think they don’t take care of stuff, that not all of us but it’s a lot of us,” said Northampton resident Kit Baird.

Chief Kasper told 22News the camps are not a threat to public safety.

“Where folks are staying in tents are not generally places where it’s dangerous to be a pedestrian by when we do respond to any of the areas where there’s camps usually it’s related to the people who live there,” Chief Kasper said. “A lot of these camps tend to be in wooded areas where you’ll see multiple tents chairs and shopping carts.”

One man who lives near the camp told 22News he cleans the area.

“We keep it clean, trash down there was left by somebody else and I’ve been going by there to keep it clean and there’s a lot of wildlife here and I want to keep it that way,” Guy Corneyor of Northampton said.

There weren’t any “No Trespassing” signs that we could see. So it would appear they camp residents are not trespassing.