Monday, April 22, 2024
Home Vacation ‘Scared to death to leave the house’

‘Scared to death to leave the house’

by Staff

A bit of a tree mystery unfolded in Dallas recently. One family left for vacation with two large pecan trees in their front yard but came home after learning that one of the trees had been felled in their absence. 

The CBS article detailing the event was shared on the Subreddit r/treelaw, where folks discuss stories involving tree law. The post links to a story that the poster saw on the news. 

Photo Credit: Reddit

According to the homeowners, the Bellews, they were contacted by their son while on vacation, asking why one of their trees was missing. They were able to look at their security system for proof. 

“The family’s doorbell camera captured workers cutting the tree down branch by branch, leaving nothing but a stump and some wood dust,” CBS reported.

The homeowners had not contracted tree work, so they assumed it was an unfortunate but honest mistake. However, the story got stranger when a second tree company showed up, claiming to have been contacted by the owner to remove another tree.

CBS detailed that text messages shared by the second company showed someone claiming to be the Bellews provided their address and a picture of their home and requested “the two trees right in front of the house” be “removed and their stumps grounded.”

The family has no idea who sent these tree companies after their home. The ordeal has left the family feeling “scared to death to leave the house,” fearing someone may still be trying to cut down their remaining pecan tree. 

Trees are important habitats for birds, squirrels, and insects, plus their shade is beneficial to humans. Trees and other plants help combat the phenomenon known as the urban heat island and clean the air. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, “Research shows that urban forests have temperatures that are on average 2.9 degrees F lower than unforested urban areas.” Cooler environments are easier on our wallets and better for our health

The r/treelaw community was rightfully upset by this story. One commenter wrote, “I hope they’re able to track down the first company and figure out who paid them.”

Another person warned that this is a type of scam, saying: “So this is a common scam in the tree industry. It’s the tree version of swatting.”

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