Stench forces Escondido man out of home

ESCONDIDO, Calif. - An Escondido community's outrage is growing over a stinky problem.

One homeowner tells 10News he was forced to leave after raw chicken manure was dumped on the golf course behind his home.

Paul Delaurentis is trying to enjoy his last days at his Escondido home.

"My days, my hours are precious to me," he said.

They are precious because Delaurtentis is living with terminal lung cancer, mesothelioma. He says he would like to spend his last months outdoors enjoying a book and the view, but the view is gone.

In 2012, Michael Schlesinger of Stuck in the Rough LLC bought the Escondido Country Club in hopes of building a housing development. The property was left to deteriorate. 

Four months ago, the company spread chicken manure over the dying green. The stench was overwhelming.

"I actually couldn't stay here anymore because I couldn't breathe," said Delaurentis.

The company was cited for the smell. The county is currently reviewing the citations to decide how much the fines will be.  

Delaurentis says the whole thing stinks and that tactics like the manure and lawsuits are being used to bully homeowners opposed to Stir's plans.

"If they have the right to do what they do, it's what it is," he said. "It hurts me because this is what I chose. This is where I invested my money and I can't pick up here and go somewhere else."

Stuck in the Rough LLC tells 10News the Escondido Country Club homeowners organization that Delaurentis is a member of is speaking out in hopes a November initiative on the plan will fail. It says it will cover Delaurentis' inconvenience.

"We are more than delighted to pick up any kind of relocation expense and to take care of them," said Beth Binger, who is with Stuck in the Rough LLC.

Delaurentis says he is not asking for a handout. He says he wants the time they wasted, since he has little left.

"I feel very upset that this was all taken away from me," he said.

Residents will vote in November on whether they want the 400-plus homes built on the grounds. The county is still trying to determine the air pollution fines the developer will face.

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