Taking a closer look at illegal dumping in Kansas City

Posted at 10:30 PM, Oct 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-10 09:11:58-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Whether it's trashed toys, couches or clothes dumped on the side of the road, Alan Ashurt does not mess around.

"Illegal dumping is a crime just like any other crime," he said.



Ashurt is one of two Kansas City illegal dumping investigators tasked with looking for signs of illegal dumping and catching the people behind the piles or trash.

Every day, he visits well-known dump sites and relies on hidden cameras. His goals are to discourage illegal dumping in the city and catch those either in the act or who cameras caught instead.

Ashurt even carries a folder around with pictures of cars and people who have been caught by his hidden cameras.

"In the four and a half years that I have been doing this, I've probably written 650 to 700 tickets. [I've had] two repeat offenders in that time," he said. "It's working. You just got to hit them where it hurts — you know — the pocketbook."

Anyone caught illegally dumping could face fines up to $1,000 or a year in jail.

Although cameras have helped crack down and minimize illegal dumping in specific areas, Ashurt said larger stretches of land are still "problem spots." So he visits these locations more frequently.

To report illegal dumping or request cameras to track and prosecute dumpers, call 311 or visit the city's website.