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'We can’t afford to dump it': Man caught illegally dumping explains why he did it

Illegal dumping
Posted at 8:54 PM, Sep 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-28 00:06:25-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Last week, the city of Kansas City, Missouri, cleaned up a large illegal dump site within 24 hours of KSHB 41 News’ original story.

Shortly after the clean-up, a KCMO illegal dumping investigator caught and fined the person behind the mess near 29th and Topping.

KSHB 41 talked with the man who received the citation about why he chose to dump garbage illegally.

“It was wrong for me to dump it there, but I didn’t know it was a place,” Glenn Gray said. “It was a dead-end street where I dumped it.”

Laurie Schwab, who originally reported the illegal dumping nearly a month ago, lives on that dead-end street.

“It was actually dumped all across the street where you couldn’t even drive by,” Schwab said.

Gray’s van and trailer were caught on street traffic cameras, so investigators were able to track down his location to a lot nearby, where he wasn’t supposed to be staying.

But Gray said he’s trying to clean the lot up.

“We dump it where people have already been dumping it, we have nowhere to dump, we can’t afford to dump it,” Gray said.

However, legally dumping is much less expensive than illegally dumping.

“For the $75 he could have dumped that trailer, this is probably going to cost him $800-$1000, not to mention we towed his truck, too,” Alan Ashurst, a KCMO illegal dumping investigator, said.

Ashurst said illegal dumping happens every single day from Platte City to Grandview.

“What makes that one particular dump a little different is that there is a house 20 yards away,” Ashurst said.

He tracked down the van, which also came back stolen.

“They just don’t care, it’s a lack of respect for their neighborhood,” Ashurst said.

Gray had receipts that show he’s dumped legally before and claimed this was the only time he did so illegally.

The city said he can either pay the fine or fight it in court — he told KSHB 41 he’d like to do community service.