After investigating a report of suspicious activity having occurred at a vacant, rundown house at 82 Berkshire Road (Route 34) in Sandy Hook, town police determined on Friday, April 26, that unusual, but not criminal, activity had taken place, police said.
Newtown Police Lieutenant Richard Robinson said that an investigation found that someone had left between 200 and 300 one-gallon plastic jugs filled with urine within the house, which is located on the west side of Route 34, between Johnny Appleseed Drive and Sherman Street. Although unusual, the matter does not constitute criminal activity, he said.
State police had referred to Newtown police a report that suspicious activity had occurred at the house, Lt Robinson said. While investigating on the evening of April 25, Newtown police determined that someone had forced open a rear door at the house, he said.
After finding the large number of jugs of what was then an unknown brown liquid substance within the house, town police contacted the state police’s narcotics unit to determine whether there was some illegal drug aspect to the situation.
About 15 people including state police, state environmental officials, town police, environmental cleanup workers, as well as town health and building officials, went to the property on April 26 to determine what had occurred.
Clean Harbors, Inc, an environmental cleanup firm, carted away the many jugs of urine, Town Health Director Donna Culbert said Friday afternoon.
In addition, the town Building Department condemned the property, having the house boarded up to prevent entry to the premises.
Considering the deteriorated physical condition of the structure, the building would need to be repaired or be demolished, Ms Culbert said. The Assessor’s Office lists the house as a single-story ranch built in 1971, on 1.36 acres of land.
Ms Culbert said she will legally notify building owner Santiago Britt that his building has been condemned by the town.
Such vacant buildings pose a nuisance, attracting unusual activity, she said.
The town health department previously had not encountered a situation such as the one at 82 Berkshire Road, Ms Culbert said.
“It was very mysterious,” she said.