Scrapper seriously injured after he’s crushed beneath porch in Detroit

The roof on the red house collapsed. Via Google Maps.
The roof on the red house collapsed today. Via Google Maps.

Neighbors could hear the moans from beneath a collapsed porch on Detroit’s west side early this afternoon.

Just moments earlier, a scrapper trying to remove an aluminum gutter from the house on Pasadena and LaSalle had inadvertently knocked off the last support for the roof’s porch, sending it crashing down on him. His leg was jutting in the wrong direction, and his neck and back may have been broken, authorities at the scene said.

About five neighbors lifted the fallen porch and removed the man before firefighters and paramedics arrived.

“He’s busted up pretty good,” said Chief 5 of the Fire Department. 

Related: 9 ways scrappers are destroying Detroit

The scrapper was rushed to Henry Ford Hospital.

More than half of the houses on the block are abandoned and scrapped.

Check back for updates on his condition.

Other posts about scrapping:

Scrappers cause collapse of ornamental ceiling in storied Eastown Theatre

New security at Packard Plant chases away long-time scrappers

Bold scrappers cause partial collapse at Packard Plant


Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.

  • Gunnut2600

    I have zero pity for this individual. It would be one thing if he was only endangering himself, but that is not the case. He is effectively playing an active role in destroying this city and endangering everyone around him.

    I was on a job site where scrappers had removed sections of the grounding system. This is what prevents people from getting fucking electrocuted to death. Expecting a de-energized system, I blew up a fluke in my hands because these assholes had created a short in the system to the high voltage side. I was millimeters away from touching live 4160V.

    People have been killed simply touching a light post because assholes have removed grounding wiring. Everyone is equally guilty…from the absentee property owners who refuse to secure their property, to the scrap dealers who knowing take stolen material, to the scrappers themselves who are actively working against any attempt to fix the city.

    I don’t care what their motivation is. They are intentionally risking their lives and others by doing this shit.

  • Dust Buster

    it is sad to a point. when i hear the argument that people do this just to survive, i temper that with “how do we know?” if he was funding a dope habit or was he buying baby formula? it is still stealing and when you go into a place and structurally destabilize to steal, regardless of motive you risk life and limb. i had a few building scrappers hit and security guy got them after a few times. they were crack heads. the dishonest work they put in was harder and returned less than had they worked at a store or fast food place. problem is many wont do that because it interferes with their lifestyle too much. scraping and stealing can be a work your own hours job

  • Billy Blake

    Yes it is sad. And people actually taking pleasure in this sad situation is morbid. I want to look at the big picture. Where is all this scrap going? I think it’s going to communist China. Not only have they taken all of our manufacturing jobs. But now they are buying up all of our scrap metal. I’m I wrong about this? I wish someone could do a little bit of history work on the abandoned buildings that were manufacturing products in Detroit. That have now gone to Communist China.

    • A.L. Cadillac

      China used more cement in the last three years than the US did in the entire 20th century, according to a tweet from Bill Gates.

  • Chris801

    Oh, this frustrates me sooo much!! Of course, i’m sorry this guy got injured. However, when you start tearing apart a structure – that doesn’t even belong to you – to steal pieces of that structure for your own personal gain – especially when it’s an unsafe structure, it’s pretty much impossible for me to remain sympathetic!
    Steve – if you do a follow up on this and report that this guy or his family is suing someone because he got injured, I will lose my mind!!

  • 1Joshua

    Great Detroit reporting. Life in parts of the USA is so degraded that people must risk their lives doing this kind of thing—while the US initiates barbarism around the world.

    • Dust Buster

      obama was supposed to fix it all. does it make it a bit better to know he is sending a bunch of marines back into iraq?

      • rhoneyman


        the marines are tasked with embassy security.

        • Dust Buster

          he learned that from benghazi. why do we need more back there to secure the embassy? its not a trick question just a simple one.

          not to get off track just a tidbit fo you. anotehr example of the pass the press give obuma. he said this not long ago and millions on the left cheered and said how amazing he was yet again. throw out some bullshit comments with a grin and the seals on left clap.

          “As the terrorists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) threaten
          Baghdad, thousands of slaughtered Iraqis in their wake, it is worth
          recalling a few of President


          past statements about ISIS and al Qaeda. “If a J.V. team puts on
          Lakers’ uniforms that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant” (January 2014).
          “[C]ore al Qaeda is on its heels, has been decimated” (August 2013).
          “So, let there be no doubt: The tide of war is receding” (September

          but hey he had more mealanin than romney so had to go with him.

          further proof that affirmative action hurts everyone on both sides

  • Tracey

    How sad that this man nearly lost his life for a few dollars. How sad a moment of carelessness led to such serious injury. How sad he had to (or felt he had to) scrap to survive. How sad there are so many neglected structures in the city that allow for this. How sad that scrapping laws are so lax. How sad there was such a fight to make those laws a little less lax. How sad so many are taking pleasure in such a sad situation.