The Nuisance Abatement Unit is composed of one Detective and one Sergeant. The Nuisance Abatement Unit works “behind the scenes” with property owners and other city departments in an attempt to first gain voluntary compliance with properties that have been deemed a “nuisance”. If voluntary compliance is not met then detectives utilize various statutes to remedy the nuisance.

Chapter 125 of the Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code is considered the “Texas Nuisance Abatement Statute”.  This statute permits law enforcement agencies to close any piece of property involved in illegal activities, including violations of the Texas Penal Code and the Texas Controlled Substances Act.

Once a property and/or location is determined to be a common nuisance, and after successful suit, it is closed for a period of one year, unless a penal bond is posted.  The nuisance laws can have a positive effect on locations that law enforcement agencies have spent numerous man hours policing.  The nuisance abatement process supplements traditional policing by providing an addition tool to remedy illegal activity at specific properties and/or locations within the city of Austin.

What kind of illegal activity can be addressed by the nuisance abatement unit?

  • prostitution
  • aggravated assault
  • sexual assault
  • robbery
  • gambling
  • organized criminal activity
  • delivery, possession, manufacture or use of a controlled substance
  • discharge of a firearm
  • unlawfully carrying a weapon
  • trafficking persons

What type of property can be closed?

  • businesses of all kinds
  • private residences
  • apartments
  • motels
  • convenience stores
  • any type of property