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Neighbors call CBS 6 for help with 'ridiculous'' grass

Posted at 4:11 PM, May 15, 2023

PETERSBURG, Va. — Wilbert Gilchrist's calls were getting him nowhere. The Petersburg, Virginia man tried and tried to get the city to take down tall grass that grew seemingly out of control near his Cameron Street home.

“It’s a real big pain. I mean neighbors complain," Gilchrist said. "Last year, a snake came out and came up into my house."

The land in question sits between a fence and the curb near the school system's bus barn and appears to be city property.

Fed up with the tall grass and weeds facing his house, Gilchrist eventually called CBS 6 senior reporter Wayne Covil for help.

“I think it’s ridiculous. I think the city should do something about it really," he said.

Covil called the city Monday morning and was told the land was not city property.

The strip of land, the city said, was owned and should be maintained by Petersburg Public Schools.

Overgrown grass in Petersburg

Still, the city decided to step in and within an hour a Petersburg Public Works crew arrived to clean the property.

That was a relief to neighbor Latiesha Battle.

"My biggest fear is the snakes," Battle said. "It's so much brush over there and on the other side... it looks like a forest on the other side.”

Battle said she'd called the city several times over the last two years to better maintain the area.

“They told me they’d get around to it," she said.

A Public Works spokesperson said it may take two days to complete the job.

Messages Covil left with Petersburg Public Schools have not yet been returned.

The City of Petersburg encouraged neighbors who see areas with overgrown grass above 12 inches to call the tall grass hotline at 804-324-5748.

Depend on CBS 6 News and WTVR.com for in-depth coverage of this important local story. Anyone with more information can email newstips@wtvr.com to send a tip.

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