PORTSMOUTH, Va. - Living room furniture, mattresses, bins of broken glass, clothing and tons of tires. The area of Main Street and Cavalier Boulevard in Portsmouth is becoming a huge eyesore.
"It's happening throughout the city. This is the worst area, and it's been constant well over a year," said Portsmouth Sheriff Michael Moore.
Moore says blighted areas are hard to miss.
"This is a heavily trafficked area, so its not like it's an isolated area. Lots of citizens pass by each day," he said.
The sheriff says illegal dumping and littering is getting out of control.
"It is hard to catch because it happens late at night or early in the morning," Moore said.
To combat this growing problem, the sheriff says he will put up video surveillance next week.
Normally, the dozen work release inmates in his jail would help clean up the chaos, but they’ve all been released from behind bars due to the pandemic. That makes the task of tossing out this trash a huge challenge.
"The responsibility of this doesn't fall on our department; we just kind of take it upon ourselves," he said.
Deputies from the department have been stepping out of their normal duties to pitch in, but now the sheriff is hoping volunteers will come out Saturday to help.
"Areas like this must change," Moore said.
The sheriff said illegal dumping carries a fine of $500 for violators.
"It's just about as much as bringing the community together for a common goal as it is the cleanup to put the 'unity' back in 'community,'" Moore said.
If you want to help, cleanup begins at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, October 3, at the 100 block of Cavalier Boulevard.