LITCHFIELD PARK, Ariz. (KSAZ) - Some people in one Litchfield Park neighborhood say the city was cruel in how it handled wildlife during a Lake construction project. They claim thousands of fish suffered and died when the lake was drained over the weekend. The lake is located in the middle of the community near Old Litchfield and Indian School roads. The people who live by say it was tough seeing the fish die like that, especially when the city had stated the wildlife would be relocated.
The four-acre Tierra Verde Lake was transformed into a smelly and not so pretty construction zone.
Dustin Goodwin is a homeowner nearby and is worried about losing privacy when the project is complete. But he's also upset with how the City of Litchfield Park handled the wildlife along the manmade lake.
He took video of what he says were thousands of fish going through an agonizing death. He says the city drained the lake without dealing with the fish as humanely as they said they would.
The $650,000 construction project started in April and displaced dozens of ducks and turtles. Some homeowners took care and rescued the animals.
The company Litchfield Park hired to remove the wildlife did not go on camera. Pacific Aqua Scape said the sludge at the bottom of the lake made it too dangerous to remove the fish without putting their crews in danger.
"I saw them the day they were bagging them up. We're talking about 700-800 pounds of fish. I mean they were flopping out there and suffocated to death, and that's kind of upsetting," said Mark Vandewarren.