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Woody Dixon's Purchase of a Condemned House

August 6, 1996


The Hon. Sharon Sayles Belton
Mayor of Minneapolis


Dear Mayor Sayles-Belton:


We, members of the Minneapolis Property Rights Action Committee and other concerned citizens of the city of Minneapolis, implore you to begin an investigation into the actions of Mr. Woody Dixon, a senior manager in the Department of Housing and Regulatory Services.

A preliminary investigation by our group, working as a watch dog for property owners located in Minneapolis, has gathered evidence that Mr. Dixon has used his position to purchase a house from an elderly widow at a value far less than its market value. Under Mr. Dixon’s supervision, the aforementioned house was condemned and, while under condemnation, was purchased by Mr. Dixon at a substantial discount. In fact, on the day that Mr. Dixon closed on his purchase of the home, he put over $25,000 in cash in his pocket after paying off the elderly woman, by obtaining two mortgages on the property. Obviously, this indicates that the property was worth much more than Mr. Dixon paid for it.

Mr. Dixon also did other improper things after purchasing the property. He illegally homesteaded the building while it was still under condemnation, which cost the city of Minneapolis thousands of tax dollars, and abated outstanding work orders against the house to obtain his Certificate of Occupancy. We have also found out that he personally did numerous areas of the required work on the house himself, that by Minneapolis code had to be done by licensed contractors.

As you probably know, Mr. Dixon is currently suing the city of Minneapolis for (racial) discrimination for not promoting him to a higher level of management. If your investigation should prove the facts that we have alleged, he certainly does not deserve a promotion, and should be subject to swift and severe consequences.

If you would like to see the documents that we have compiled to support our allegations, we should be happy to meet with you. We think that after you review all of the facts in this matter, you will have probable cause to determine what criminal and ethical breaches have occurred. The citizens of Minneapolis must have trust in their government and city officials, not fear and contempt. When officials such as Mr. Dixon commit serious and improper acts, the City must act swiftly and forcefully to maintain this trust.


Sincerely,


Charles Disney,
chairman, Minneapolis Property Rights Action Committee

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