Not more than ten steps into our visit at Taft Homes, we saw the evidence everywhere. A dead rat, holes under the porches, in the ground, and even in people's homes.
"They're not like little mice, they're rats, I saw a rat that looked like a rabbit," said Faith Brown.
"I saw another rat down there while I was playing and I got scared," said five year old Za'halla Valentine.
It's not just kids who are afraid.
Brenda Coleman says a rat bit her hand a few months ago while she was sleeping.
"I felt the teeth so I jumped up, turned on a light and I was bleeding. A little small rat came from under my bed," she said.
Coleman hasn't slept in her bedroom since.
"Where do you sleep?" asked WMBD 31.
"On the couch, and I keep a sick by the couch and I hit the table now and then," Coleman answered.
That doesn't scare them away. Neither do the traps lining her home, nor the poison she and her neighbors put outside.
"Every night they come out and run," said five year old Dre'anna Brown.
That's exactly what we saw. When the sun went down, the rats came out.
Coleman says the managers at Taft Homes know this is going on.
"We've been telling them for three, four, five months," said Coleman.
Since she wasn't getting anywhere, we tried.
Supervisors at the Peoria Housing Authority said managers at Taft Homes didn't tell them what was going on, so they decided to take a trip out too.
"Your phone call is what prompted us to come out here. I'm kind of thanking God that channel 31 called us today because I didn't know about this until today. If that's what it takes to get something done, then so be it," said Meghan Lundeen with the Peoria Housing Authority.
So Lundeen called up pest control. But, here's the problem: the rats are attracted to the food and garbage that people are leaving outside. Until they stop, the rats will keep coming back, no matter what the housing authority does.
People who live at Taft Homes insist it never would have gotten this bad if management would have listened months ago.
"There are people who are very upset and have been calling for months, what do you say to them?" asked WMBD 31.
"They have a right to be upset, I would be. I certainly don't want to live with rats like some of our residents are doing now. What I would say to them is I'm sorry, I apologize if you're upset, but don't be afraid to call someone else. If you're not getting a response, don't be afraid to go above their heads," said Lundeen.
"Just because we live down here doesn't mean we have to live like this," said Coleman.
Coleman says she's just glad something is finally being done. She's ready to have her home back to herself, and enjoy...rather than dread...the sunset at Taft Homes.
Managers at Taft homes say they called pest control a month ago, but decided not to do anything. They say the experts told them nothing will help if people keep leaving out food.
This time, it is different. Pest control is getting a plan together to take care of the problem. It could be up to five days until people at Taft Home start noticing a difference.