WEST DES MOINES, Iowa -- A recent rash of crime at a West Des Moines duplex complex has landlords demanding DNA tests. They will be used to trace evidence left at the scene of crime back to the pet responsible.
“It’s kind of preposterous to think that we need to go through this,” laughs Melany Ruch, Assistant Property Manager of the Greenway Square Complex.
Four-legged, furry suspects are at the center of this case. On Monday, Ruch helped pet owners swab for doggie DNA.
“I definitely read the note and I was like, 'what?' It sounded very CIA,” smiles resident, Samantha Haunsberger.
The forensic test comes after tenants failed to pick up their pooches' poop. Once tested, the DNA will be kept on file.
Waste that is not picked up will be tested and traced back to the owner for a fine. The first offense costing the owner $150, then gradually increasing to $200 by the third offense. After the third strike, man and man’s best friend are kicked off the property.
“It’s just like anything. There are policies, there are rules and have to follow them. I think this is ok and hopefully, it will clean up the community,” tenant Ron Nielson says.
The testing is required for all residents with pets. Several Hubbell Realty sites follow the same rules and so far have seen positive results.
“We’ve seen a drastic change. We really haven`t had to do too many charges for residents because they kind of got the point with the initial notice,” says Ruch.
As for a visual reminder for residents to pick up what their pet leaves behind, the complex has installed several pet waste stations.