The owner of a tidy Colonial-style home in Bridgeport’s North End that city and state officials allege is an illegal junkyard said Thursday morning that his family is being “persecuted.”
Richard Domogala of 60 Cumberland Drive, told the Connecticut Post that his family’s gas meter has been disconnected because officials believe that natural gas was being used to melt metal.
“We can’t take showers. It is a hardship,” an agitated Domogala said. “We use propane to melt the metal; we’re recycling here.”
Neighbors in his Lake Forest neighborhood “are going through hell,” the 51-year old man said. But his grown son, not him, is responsible for the illegal scrapyard.
“He’s crazy. He won’t stop dragging scrap metal home because the money is too good,” Domogala said. “What am I gonna do? I paid $25,000 bond and the place is pretty much cleaned up. We want our gas meter back.”
Domogala was charged with breach of peace and larceny, the latter stemming from the theft of city-owned property, police said. He also had an outstanding warrant for failing to appear in court.
After posting bond Tuesday afternoon, Domogala allegedly threatened to trash the mayor’s office.
The city fire marshal, building inspector and anti-blight enforcement officer have all visited the Cumberland Drive home in recent days, and Domogala was issued an order to clean the site.
The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection sent a hazardous material unit to the property, spokeswoman Cyndy Chanaca said, for a spill of hydraulic oil from a leaking payloader.
“It is considered a minor spill — less than 10 gallons. But we are also aware of a junkyard setup on the property and we will be looking into that as well,” she said.