Orlando apartment complex could get funds to fix up security following recent crime

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ORLANDO, Fla. - An Orlando apartment complex could get a half million dollars to help fix up the place and fix up security.

The Timbersound apartments was the scene of a frightening attempted rape two months ago.

Now WFTV's Daralene Jones learned a federal grant from the city may improve things there if the complex makes some important changes first.

Tonja Sanchez moved into the Timbersound apartment complex off Kirkman Road because it was better for her family. As the tenant association president, she's heard complaints about the plumbing, burglaries and this summer a woman was nearly kidnapped and raped. Nathador Defoe was arrested in the case.

But some told WFTV they still don't feel safe.

"I think we deserve to have a better lifestyle for our families," said Sanchez.

Residents paying nearly $700 a month for market rent are frustrated, but have no way out.

"Sometimes I feel like they should like tear them down, but if they tear them down where is everybody going to go?" said resident Jazmine Ellis.

WFTV learned the owners contacted the city of Orlando and want taxpayers to pay a half million dollars to renovate the place that now has some security. The money comes from a federal grant. In exchange, the owners have to invest $12,000.

But city officials haven't signed off on the deal and WFTV was told they won't until the owners agree to improve the lighting and take a look at the gaping hole in the wrought iron fence.

"Our primary mission with the housing community development department is to make sure everyone have safe and affordable housing to live in," said Paulette Edwards, with the City of Orlando Housing.

The owners won't get the money up front, either. City officials said they're reimbursed after improvements are made.

An employee who answered the phone in the front office said the company had "no comment."