ST. LOUIS — A home surveillance camera captured a very peculiar scene: an unknown man dragging a city trash dumpster behind an SUV in a St. Louis neighborhood alley.   

Residents aren’t exactly sure what it shows, but it’s easy to see why they think it may have something to do with illegal dumping.   

The sounds of St. Louis summer now include a screeching dumpster being in an alley between Ferris and McArthur near Goodfellow. The video shows a man pulling it with a rope or chain attached to the vehicle, then getting out of the SUV and shoving the dumpster into a new spot in the alley.    

“It made me shake my head,” said resident and 22nd Ward Democrat Committeewoman Norma Walker. “At first, I couldn’t figure out what he was doing. I think it was probably a frustrated resident; frustrated with maybe the trash being overloaded or people putting stuff around it. That’s something I never would have thought of doing:  hooking up my car to a container and dragging it.”   

Walker is also the Democratic nominee for 22nd Ward Alderman in an upcoming special election.  

The frustration with trash is understandable with everything from smashed TVs to broken-down furniture to plain old stinky garbage spilling out of dumpsters and into yards. It’s happening right under signs warning of 24-hour video surveillance and threats of prosecution for illegal dumping. 

There’s more garbage stacking up in the neighborhood alleys than the actual residents can possibly throw away. They say it’s a magnet for more illegal dumpers.   

Dumpsters, however, are city property. Moving them like this out of frustration or for any other reason is not allowed.   

“Obviously, you think maybe (this man) was just a little bit flustered, maybe just decided to make it somebody else’s problem instead of his problem — but it’s all our problem and we really need to work on that,” Walker said.   

City officials are currently reviewing proposals to go from 200 illegal dumping surveillance cameras to 500 city-wide. Residents don’t seem to have much faith in that plan.   

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