Chicago

Vacant Homes in Chicago Up 22 Percent Since 2010

Foreclosure crisis killing city?

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As someone whose company boards up homes, Steve Werner has seen houses stripped clean of copper wire, pipes and anything else that scrap dealers will buy. He's walked into others with food still sitting on the kitchen counter. His crews run across the occasional abandoned pet, left to fend for itself with a bag of dog food dumped on the floor.

But he was taken aback when his crew walked into a West Side house one winter's day to find a drug addict frozen stiff with a needle still stuck in his arm.