This segment originally aired Oct. 19, 2016, on VICE News Tonight on HBO.
“I would just eat out of the trash, sleep on the ground,” a squatter named Dawn Louden told VICE News correspondent Michael Moynihan about life before squatting. “You do what you have to do to survive.”
Las Vegas was hit harder by the 2007 economic downturn than most cities, and evicting squatters from previously foreclosed houses has become a priority for the Las Vegas Metro Police. “What we’ve typically seen is a direct correlation to a squatter house being the nucleus of crime for that neighborhood,” Lt. Nick Farese said. “You just really never know what’s going to be on the other side of the door.”
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