Cleveland: Victim's family glad to see Sowell's house go

4:36 AM, Dec 6, 2011   |    comments
  • Sowell Imperial Ave. house minutes before demolition. (Photo by Shane Snider)
  • Equipment in place minutes before Anthony Sowell's Imperial Avenue home is demolished. (Photo by Shane Snider)
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CLEVELAND -- Early Tuesday morning, crews will begin demolishing the Imperial Avenue home where convicted mass murderer Anthony Sowell killed 11 women.

The city completed asbestos abatement Monday.

It's been carefully following the legal steps needed to tear down the house which stands in mute testimony to a horrific story.

Hand-delivered letters were sent to the families of Sowell's victims Monday to notify them of the impending demolition.

"To see it being done is going to dredge up a whole lot," said Annetta Bell.

Bell is the sister of Crystal Dozier, one of Sowell's victims.

Her uncle got the letter from the city, and notified Bell Monday evening.

"I said, alright, alright, alright!" Bell said of her response to the news.

She won't be able to attend the demolition, but says other families and Imperial Avenue neighbors will.

What she doesn't want, is for the absence of the horrific home to cause people to forget about the victims who suffered there.

"We're never going to forget. It's still like yesterday to us, to all of the families," Bell said.

Several of the victims' families would like to see a memorial garden, or some sort of marker erected when the demolition is complete.

The property at 12205 Imperial Ave was condemned this fall. It still is owned by the Sowell family, which the city of Cleveland is billing for the demolition cost.

City officials say they won't be able to do anything while it's private property; however, if the owner falls behind on paying the bill or the taxes, they could put a lien on the property.


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