NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Dozens of families were told to leave their residences at Mosaic Apartments by Monday morning.
Roughly 50 people were told a city inspection turned up a sewage leak, but many residents don't believe that's the real reason.
"They haven't given us any documentation on anything," said Sabrina Hickman.
Sabrina Hickman has lived at Mosaic Apartments for one year. She is suspicious of the timing of the notices to leave the property.
"For them to just do this to us right now it's crazy because they can't evict nobody so they're coming up with stuff to get people out," Hickman said.
Hickman wonders if the sewage problem was made up to get around the eviction moratorium put forward by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
According to a property standards inspection chief with Metro Codes, there has not been a complaint filed about the complex since February of 2020. Metro Codes visited the apartment on Monday and did not see anything alarming.
Despite that, some residents, including immigrant families, moved out in recent days when they were told about the supposed city inspection and sewage leak.
"Many folks just started leaving over the last two weeks," said Eduardo Garcia. "Folks have been evacuating the apartment. Folks with current leases [who are] paying rent have been evacuating the apartments because they're afraid they're going to get the sheriff called on them."
Residents protested outside the apartment complex on Monday.
"Something isn't right, because like my brother was saying, he was like you don't smell sewage out here. If it was a sewage leak you're going to smell it, no matter where you are, you're going to smell it and we haven't smelled anything," said Hickman.
According to the group, residents were told if they didn't move by 10 a.m. Monday their locks would be changed and the sheriff's office would show up. That did not happen.
NewsChannel 5 reached out to Mosaic Apartments management and received the following response from Jennifer Pasquale, the area director of Mosaic Apartments:
“Mosaic Apartments received documentation from BluSky on Friday, May 21, 2021, of catastrophic property damage to several units within our community stemming from the weather events in March 2021. Due to the extent of repairs needed to these apartments, it is necessary for the impacted residents to vacate their apartment. A formal notice was issued to the impacted residents on Tuesday, May 25, 2021, providing them with 14 days to vacate their apartment. We are committed to working with residents to help identify alternative housing within the area. Additionally, we have waived any outstanding balances for current residents impacted by this event, as well as refunded their security deposit and issued $1,500 to ease the financial burden of this unfortunate event.”