LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) – Thousands of people have lost their homes in Clark County since the pandemic, which creates an opportunity for squatters to move in.

The Las Vegas valley is home to hundreds of apartment complexes, but there are many empty units within them.

“Some of these apartment complexes that we are contracted with have upwards of 150 vacant units on property,” Chief Jonathan Alvarez the CEO of Protective Force International said.

Alvarez’s private security team contracts with more than 300 apartment complexes in town to patrol and many are dealing with squatters taking over.

“For some of these folks, home is right up stairs or right next door to those vacant units,” Sgt. Jailyn Thompson with PFI said.

The problem has gotten so bad that PFI has created a task force just to handle the issue. Sgt. Thompson is the head of it.

Protective Force International explains to FOX5 what they are doing in Las Vegas to crack down on squatters in apartment homes, especially when used for crime.

They say with the county evictions continuing to rise, the problem is not going anywhere, according to Alvarez and his team.

“It feels like just a big fire we are attempting to put out,” Sgt. Thompson said.

The security team shared exclusive video with FOX5 which showed the task force going into a vacant unit.

They tell FOX5 it is not just squatters looking for shelter.

“We have essentially found trafficked children in them, narcotics and drug use, there have been fires,” Alvarez said.

The task force can never tell what could be behind the doors so they are always prepared for any danger that may be lurking.

“We have had officers attacked with knives, pipes and different weapons,” Alvarez said. “Every time they go into one of these units there is an unknown and we train for the unknown.’

While the task force has boots on the ground, they have use their drone to capture anyone trying to escape them.

The task force also works with Metro Police for when they do suspect there is criminal activity going on inside the units.

They suggest property owners, and managers to not post exactly which unit they have available because that is a key give away for a squatter to know they can move in.

FOX5 did reach out to Clark County to get an updated number of their evictions so far this year, but we are still waiting to hear back.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *