Colonial Heights workers accused of harassing homeless man - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Colonial Heights workers accused of harassing homeless man

COLONIAL HEIGHTS, VA (WWBT) -

A charitable group is taking on the City of Colonial Heights, claiming City workers are harassing a homeless man. They say the workers even trashed donations recently given to him. 

"Jerry" has no legs and is confined to a wheel chair.

"Somebody has to care," said Jennifer Coleman.

Jennifer Coleman has a big heart. She started the Tri-Cities Free Helping Hands and Heart group that collects countless items to give away to those in need. Its latest client is Jerry.

"He is homeless. He is disabled. He has no legs, and he's is being mistreated," she told us.

Coleman says Colonial Heights city workers are harassing Jerry, forcing him to move after complaints of trespassing on private property.

"I think it says that they are a heartless city, that they don't care," Coleman added.

She keeps a garage full of donated items that she has collected over time. She decided to donate those items to Jerry, things like coats and food. To her surprise, Jennifer says the City took those items and trashed them.

"They don't know what's going to happen to him. If this group, Helping Hands, had some concern about that, they might have tried to contact the City before they called the media," said City Manager Tom Mattis. "If the individuals involved have a concern about it all they have to do is contact me and we'll see what we can work out."

The fix is simple says Coleman who was, by the way, recently awarded hundreds of dollars in our Acts of Kindness segment. Money she spent to help people like Jerry.

"I want them to leave him alone," Coleman said.

So will the city back off?

"We work out problems to the mutual satisfaction of individuals every day," said Mattis. "Be glad to do that here."

Coleman says the City has given Jerry until Thursday to leave his current location. She's hoping they will have a change of heart.

Copyright 2013 WWBT NBC12.  All rights reserved.

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