Sheriff Sale Postponed For Poplawski House

STANTON HEIGHTS (KDKA) — The house on Fairfield Street in Stanton Heights looks as it has for the past two years — a boarded-up eyesore and a reminder of the tragedy that claimed the lives of the three Pittsburgh police officers.

Fatigued neighbors who had hope it would be sold or torn down will have to wait after a petition from Margaret Poplawski delaying the sheriff sale.

“It’s always been quiet neighborhood and we were all shocked at what happened and we would like things to be over,” said Branislava Simic.

In her petition, Poplawski says the house is quote “uninhabitable” “because of the action of the city” and that the city has caused her to lose the equity in her home.

The city law department would not respond because of a gag order in the criminal case except to dismiss the charge as untrue.

City SWAT officers did in fact riddle the house with hundreds of rounds, but in response to the shooting of the three officers. In her court papers, Margaret says she bears no responsibility for the actions of her son Richard.

In a separate suit filed against Allegheny County, she blames a 911 dispatcher failing to notify the responding officers that her son had guns in the house. These legal claims of Margaret Poplawski outraged law enforcement officials KDKA Investigator Andy Sheehan spoke with on Friday, but none would comment because of the gag order and the sheriff sale has been postponed indefinitely.

So for now and into the foreseeable future, the boarded up house will remain as a grim reminder of the tragedy on Fairfield Street — not a fitting memorial to the officers who gave their lives two years ago.

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  • HonortheFallen

    Just tear it down! I guarantee you could find 5,000 Pittsburghers who would willingly volunteer their weekend to make it happen.

    • Mark

      ^ Agree! ^

    • Anna

      ^Totally agree!^

  • Doreen Barlow Duncan

    First and foremost I am deeply sorry for what happened to the police officers but I agree with Mrs. Poplawski and think the nature of the crime and because it was police officers involved may have pushed the foreclosure a little faster then it normally would have taken. If she wants and can live in that house who do her neighbors think they are to say she can’t. If we tore down every house that had a brutal crime take place in..I wonder how many homes would be standing.

  • Bea

    For Doreen, this isn’t the whole story. Seems you may not know that. She can’t live in the house, because she was in arrears for taxes never paid. That prompted the foreclosure, because she was “caught” after the shootings. She claimed she shouldn’t have to pay because she said she couldn’t live there and the city should pay her. She has been playing games with this for 2 years. Personally, I think this is all just a defense tactic for her son. If she looks crazy enough, then it is an easier jump for him to look insane too. If it looks like she was an irresponsible, psychopath, why wouldn’t he be.

  • bobbyjo

    why wasn’t she charged along with her pos son? She knew he had guns and his intent…she should be hung along with him///

    • Sara Sams

      I agree . Mom should be charged in the murders just as the son. She could of told the dispatcher he had guns. shame on her for not saving the vary people who protect their sorry ass.It will be two yrs come April lets jest give them death and save our tax dollars..

  • JustCurious

    I also agree with Doreen! How many other home owners in the city are in arrears for taxes- but haven’t had their homes foreclosed? Mrs. Poplawski is not the criminal- her son is! He’s a grown “man” (a very sick one no doubt). @ Bobbyjo- If she notified the dispatcher that guns were in the house- why should she be charged? I’m also curious to know- do you think the dispatcher should be charged? @ Bea- What exactly makes her look like an irresponsible psychopath? The fact that HER SON is a cop killer, or the fact that she (like NUMEROUS other home owners) is in arrears on her taxes?

    • Mike

      Did she pay the mortgage or taxes? If not then sell it. There are tons of houses up for sale for the same thing.

    • James Slick

      If someone commits a criminal act in my house while under my “control” You can GUARANTEE that I would be held responsible. in fact LANDLORDS are often held responsible for what their TENANTS do and they my be hundreds of miles away. And to sue the City for damage incurred due to ACTIONS OF HER SON would be like her suing the Fire Dept for axing the roof after her kid set the house on fire! Then again she probably would……….

  • jeff

    For those of you defending her, the whole situation started over a fight between her and her son. BRING IN THE WRECKING BALL

  • Kim

    You people defending this mother are out of your minds! Her so shouldnt even be alive for wha he did in front of the whole community! We are wasting tax dollars keeping this a$$ alive, This whole episode started because she was an a$$ that had to call 911 because her son is crazy and the dogs were peeing on the floor! I say take the wrecking ball to the house with her and her son inside!

  • johnny69

    I have been wondering the same thing for two yearsd, he was sticking his humongous pumpkin up every couple of minutes to fire, it should have been one shaoit and done, there’s another one for the bonfire (Night of the Living Dead)

  • johnny69

    One shot bad spell day!

  • Justice for All!

    They like to make movies here in Pittsburgh Right?
    So sell the house to the movie producers so they can make a movie in the house everyone was murdered in!
    What a great idea, the movie people will pay whatever price the city wants and the city can make a lot of money out of the whole episode!
    The City always needs money!
    What a great Idea!

  • This is my shocked face

    1) Griffin broadcasts hearsay as facts every day and 2) does not need outside assistance to look like a “jagoff”.

  • JustCurious

    Wow! So she’s an ass because she had to call 911 because of a fight she had with her son- who obviously is out of his mind?!?! Maybe kdka has the story wrong- but I’m sure I read that the mother told the dispatcher there were guns in the house, and the DISPATCHER failed to relay that IMPORTANT fact to the responding officers! Again- she should not be punished for a crime HER SON committed! I’m sure we ALL agree- he’s a piece of s### and deserves to suffer for what he did, but I still don’t see why/ what the mother should be charged for.

  • Connie (Bloomfield)

    The mother is not being puniished for a( son that has no right to take another breath)..Her home is being forclosed, because she is behind on her morgage like so many others, the reason people want it torn down is because of the horrible acts that were done there. No one would want to pay to live there, so let somone pay back taxes and tear the damn thing down and let these familyswho lost loved ones move on a little. The community don’t want this house there , so BLOW it UP.

  • JustCurious

    @ Connie- I understand why they are trying to take her house. I was asking the people who feel she should have charges brought against her, why they feel that way! What charges should she face? Correct me if I’m wrong, but she did inform the dispatcher that guns were in the home right?

    • bill

      She could have warned the police that came to her door he had weapons AND a bullet proof vest on.Telling the dispatcher was all well and good but she needed to warn them as well!! She is just as guilty as her son.She obviously thought he was more than she could handle since she called 911 and so by not warning the police herself she is an accomplice! My nephew would still be alive as well as the other 2 brave men if they had known what kind of a domestic problem they were facing. How many domestic problems are there who wear bulletproof vests and arm themselves with all the firepower he had???

  • bill

    You are sick!

  • James Slick

    I don’t know HOW ANYONE can defend this broad. I remember almost chaining herself up at the house at the time, and complaining that the City wouldn’t let her live there (While it was an active crime scene.) Then she has the stones to wand TO SUE the City for the damages to the dump!!! People might blow all that off as her son was an adult, But even if this little jerk was 60, SHE IS RESPONSIBLE for what goes on IN HER HOUSE! Having had some experience in building demolition, you can be sure that I would gladly volunteer some time to help raze it!

  • Dunkin

    Make a Dunkin Donuts out of it

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