Police investigate criminal damage after Irish J1 house party in Chicago
A group of male Irish students are alleged to have smashed every window in the building.
A group of male Irish J1 students are alleged to have destroyed a house in Chicago on what is believed to have been their last night in a property that they had been renting during the summer months.
According to DNA Info Chicago, police called to the scene at approximately 1.30am and again at around 10.30am on Thursday morning, following reports that windows had been smashed, furniture had been thrown and neighbours had been disturbed by raucous behaviour at a party in Logan Square, north of the city centre.
One neighbour said that the house had become "a straight-up frat house — 'Animal House,'", due to regular parties taking place until as late as 5am over the summer months.
The owner of the property, Joseph Kiferbaum, said he knew that it was being sublet but wasn’t aware initially that it was being sublet to a group of Irish men on student visas.
He issued an apology to local residents, saying: "I sincerely feel bad the neighbours have to deal with it and makes people feel like there's crime going on.
"Every time I was made aware of the issue, we addressed it immediately. The fact of the matter is they were subleasing for three months; there's no action I could take within that period of time legally that could gain any traction."
The report in DNA Info claims that one neighbour was chased down an alley with a brick by one resident of the property who realised that he was being filmed; the neighbour filming the scene initially encouraged the behaviour in order to record footage of what was going on.
Another neighbour described the property as “WWE”-style “eyesore” and claimed that large piles of rubbish left outside it attracted rats to the area.
"It's just awful and intimidating seeing like 12 people there drinking, being obnoxiously loud, piles of trash. It's not a welcoming feeling," neighbour David Beltran told DNA Info.
"It's really scary when you see 12 people being violent in your neighbourhood. Whether it's just fooling around or actual intent to destroy something, you get the same feeling, which is: 'Something's not right.'"
Pictures and video footage of the scenes at the property can be seen on DNA Info here; one resident can be seen pointing towards the property, saying: "That's our house."
The building will soon be demolished and replaced with two and three bedroom town houses that will be occupied by families.
Police reported receiving a call "related to trespassing and criminal damage to property," on Thursday but no arrests were made.