Paradise Lakes looters target flood victims' identifying information

Omaha, Neb. (WOWT) While Paradise Lakes still awaits demolition the people who once lived there are facing what they describe as a nightmare.

“All they left was my daughter's art stuff,” said Susan Oliver as she dug through a plastic container. It’s what was taken from her home that scares Oliver.

“Our ID, our social security cards, birth certificates, death certificates,” said Oliver.

It’s risky for her to be back in her home. She's had a liver transplant and is on immune suppressants, which make her vulnerable to whatever has been incubating inside the home for the past 8 months.

“They've gone through the desk and all the wiring and stuff,” said Oliver. “It looks like they're just looking for what they could sell."

And that’s the reason Oliver is back at her home; it's in response to a call a former neighbor received from Bellevue police.

Brandy Cantell played back the voicemail left by police: “I'm calling for Brandy Cantell, several of your identity cards and money cards were found in the pocket of a person we arrested at Paradise Lakes."

Cantell tried her best but wasn't able to retrieve everything from her flooded out home.
The cards that were stolen had been stuck in a desk.

"I think we were able to break one draw open and get the kids' birth certificates, but that was it,” said Cantell. “Everything else was just swollen shut."

Cantell counts herself lucky the looter was caught; luck Oliver didn't have. Walking through . . . . what looters left of her home Oliver is overwhelmed.

“Violation,” she said. “It's a complete violation."

The City of Bellevue has been working to secure a lien on the property before tearing down the homes. Mayor Rusty Hike told 6 news this week that they won't start demolition until they have a lien in place.