A person found living in an underground hole has been removed following reports of unlawful activity.
In the United Kingdom, the unhoused man’s eviction from his unusual cave-like dwelling just before Christmas has become a viral news story.
Authorities in Suffolk county took action — during the holidays, no less — to vacate the forest goer from his home in a woodland off a major road in England. The man, who has not been named by local media, had reportedly fashioned a tent at the bottom of set of dug-out steps, leading into the ground, since February 2019.
Law enforcement suspected the man had been engaging in “criminal activity” at his makeshift lodgings, and displayed apparently worrisome antisocial behavior, according to the local outlet East Anglian Daily Times.
According to a tweet by the Stowmarket Police, multiple agencies took part in the recent “safeguard[ing]” of the male suspect. The department hashtagged their tweet, “#Returning_Land_For_All_To_Enjoy,” which included photos of the DIY abode and a short video of the hole the man called home for three years being filled in with dirt.
The man is now receiving care from a family member, police added, according to Triangle News.
Meanwhile, the Stowmarket cops’ tweet elicited a series of emotional reactions, with some characterizing the move as unnecessary and cruel.
“If he has been living happily there for 3 yrs including through the pandemic, causing no harm, no asb [sic] and no criminal activity why couldn’t he stay if he is safe and well there,” one critic responded on Twitter.
“Hope you enjoy your festive gathering. Feeling pleased with yourselves and happy that this poor soul is now out in the cold and winter conditions . Bah humbug to all of you,” griped another.
Others agreed that removing the man was the best thing to do in the situation.
“Personally as someone who felt worried about walking near where he was due to reports of aggressive behavior from him to members of the public I’m pleased to know this person has been moved on and also it seems to suggest safeguarding provisions are in place for him,” one person tweeted.
“To all the people angry at this he has had multiple incidents with the police and attacking or threatening people around that area so moving him on is clearly the right thing to do,” wrote another.
“My initial thoughts were this man is doing no harm, leave him be, however on further reading it seems aggression and fear [has] come to light so safeguarding really is the only option for this vulnerable man,” added a third.
Ex-Brit turned Manhattan resident since 2008.