Fed up Memphis man confronts illegal dumpers, asks them to pick up their trash


MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A Memphis man took to social media Monday after he confronted two people he says were unloading items at an illegal dumpsite in North Memphis.

Daryl Lewis said he was driving down Marble near Second Street when he noticed two young men in a pickup truck pass by him and take bags of trash, TV boxes, and other items out of the bed of their truck and place them near other garbage dumped on the side the road.

Picture courtesy of Daryl Lewis

“I asked them what made them think that was a good idea,” said Lewis. “You know, you saw a pile of trash sitting here on the side of the road, and you just figured, well, I’ll just dump my stuff on top of it?”

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Lewis said they told him they were in a hurry and needed someplace to dump the trash. Lewis said that’s when he told them they would have to pick up the trash and take it with them and posted their pictures on Facebook.

Picture courtesy of Daryl Lewis

“Having worked in code enforcement for a few years, I understand what the law says about illegal dumping and where they should be dumping it,” Lewis said. “The problem is most people don’t want to take the time it correctly because they don’t want to have to pay for it.”

Lewis said most people figure if they dump it and don’t get caught, the city will eventually pick it up. He pointed to a pile of more than 20 box springs and mattresses dumped in the same area about three weeks ago.

“It’s been called in before, so I’m not certain when the city will get it, but this stuff happens all the time,” said Lewis.

Community group installs cameras to catch illegal dumping

Some neighborhoods have put up cameras to catch illegal dumpers in the act. Back in March, city council members told WREG they were committed to tackling illegal dumping and blight.

Around 200 people have already commented on Lewis’ post. He said, unfortunately when people dump their trash on the side of the road, taxpayers have to foot the bill.

City initiative uses new strategy to tackle blight throughout Memphis

“Just take your own time and your own money and dump it where you should,” Lewis said. “There are a lot of dumpsters around where people may not mind you putting your stuff into their dumpster.”

Memphis City Ordinance says any person who litters on another person’s property without his or her permission, on any public highway, street, or road, upon public parks or recreation area, or upon any other property could be found guilty of a misdemeanor and fined up to $50.

You can report blight to the city of Memphis by calling 311, or you can fill out a complaint form right here.

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