Villa Del Mar tenants avoid trespass penalty

Some residents who chanced staying in the Villa Del Mar apartments -- despite a city order to vacate -- got a lucky break.

Last month, Federal Way notified residents they’d have to leave Villa Del Mar by Oct. 8 unless property owner Derek Brown fixed a laundry list of code and safety violations at the complex, 29401 Pacific Highway S.

The city posted notices on 12 occupied units on Oct. 8, notifying the residents that they’d face trespassing charges if they remained and that the city planned to issue citations on Tuesday, said City Building Official Mary Kate Martin.

But when city officials showed up in the early morning hours, only three families remained in flagged units.

“A lot of people moved out last night,” she said. “Nobody knows when.”

The remaining families were in the process of moving to units that the city had declared safe to live in, so were not ticketed, she said.

The residents’ former landlord didn’t get off so easily.

Brown faces charges stemming from city code and Uniform Housing Code violations. He was scheduled to appear in

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