Formerly drug-addicted, homeless veteran finds stability in Antioch RV park; now faces eviction

Jimmy Gordon is a Vietnam veteran still living with battle scars from shrapnel.

"It's still right here. It's lodged right here," he said pointing to his leg.

Once homeless and drug addicted, Gordon says he's found stability in this informal RV community on private property in northeast Antioch.

"I've got serenity here. It feels like I am living," he says.

But it appears that paradise is about to be lost. Gordon and the rest of the 16 people living here are about to be evicted,

Not because the property owner, Joe Bosman wants to, but because the city of Antioch says he has to.

Code enforcement is requiring all my RV tenants to leave the property by October 1st," says Bosman, who has owned the almost three-acre lot for 19 years.

He's allowed people with RVs to settle here. Many are veterans, disabled seniors and mothers.

"It's close to our work. The tenants are nice and it is affordable," says Veronica Lewis-Ayers who lives in an RV with her husband and nine-month old baby boy.

Rent is $625 a month. The RVs have plumbing and electricity. 

Bosman says the city told him his property doesn't meet the standards of a state-licensed RV park.

If the residents aren't out by October 1, Bosman faces a $14,000 a week fine. 

"I never promoted it as an RV park. I see it as an interim solution to big problem. A housing crisis problem," says Bosman.

None of the tenants we spoke with seem to know where they will go if they have to leave here. They also say they don't want to go without their trailers.

"We're going to have nowhere to put it. And we are going to be homeless," says Gordon.

Antioch officials did not return our calls.

The city council is meeting Tuesday night to discuss the issue and perhaps find solutions, but the residents could end up on the street.

"[It's] definitely causing a lot of stress in our family, trying to figure out where we can go," says Lewis-Ayers.