Homeless Helping Homeless shelter raided by police and shuttered by code enforcement

Tampa shelter operator under investigation

TAMPA - It's been a tough week for the Homeless Helping Homeless shelter on Floribraska Avenue.

The shelter, run by Adolphus Parker, was raided Wednesday by police. Then on Thursday, code enforcement slapped them with an order to evacuate because of unsafe conditions.

Parker, who says HHH shelters more than 70 people in four different locations, believes he's being targeted for trying to fight City Hall.

"I poked the bear [City of Tampa]. Now the bear is hitting back," said Parker, referring to his federal lawsuit against the city's anti-panhandling ordinance. Homeless Helping Homeless is funded in part by money collected at intersections.

"This investigation has nothing to do with the homeless shelter. It's irrelevant," said TPD spokeswoman Andrea Davis.

Tampa Police Department says the warrant concerns Parker's other business, Vehicle Title Retrieval. Tampa Police along with the statewide prosecutor are investigating a complaint that Parker's company committed fraud. 

Parker claimed sixteen police cars showed up on Wednesday morning, but TPD says it was closer to four. Police had a warrant and confiscated computers and other records.

Davis says the police department had nothing to do with initiating the homeless ordinance and stressed that Adolphus Parker is not charged with any crime.
The landlord who owns the building will have to address the code violations, but until that's done, the shelter will be essentially out of business.

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