Read The Dallas Morning News front-page story about Plano residents fed up with short-term rentals
Shooting at Airbnb, Vrbo property has Plano residents doubling down on short-term rentals
A bullet went through the window of one resident’s home. Plano community members have advocated against short-term rentals in their neighborhoods.
By Myah Taylor
4:01 AM on Feb 28, 2023
A party at an Airbnb and Vrbo property that resulted in bullets flying into a nearby home with a 3-year-old inside has further angered Plano residents already fighting against short-term rentals in their neighborhoods.
According to police, gunshots connected to a home on Cannes Drive in Plano were fired around 2 a.m. Sunday, startling residents in the Oakwood Glen neighborhood located northwest of North Central Expressway.
“They ended up picking up 10 shells from the yard in the neighborhood,” Tim Landauer, whose house sits nearby, told The Dallas Morning News.
A bullet from the shooting went through the window of the house across the street from the short-term rental property. Zoey Sanchez and Cole Reveal said it was the window to their 3-year-old daughter’s playroom. They were all sleeping in another part of the house when the shots were fired, the couple said.
The bullet ricocheted through the dining room of the house, leaving additional holes in the walls, one of the blinds and one of Sanchez’s prized posters. They found the bullet in their cat’s litter box.
“I can’t even imagine if one of us was out there,” Sanchez told The News.
No one was harmed in the shooting, according to the Oakwood Glen residents.
Many of those residents and those from the Texas Neighborhood Coalition, wielding signs reading “Enough is Enough” and “Stop Short-Term Rentals Now,” showed up at City Council on Monday to voice their concerns.
“I do not want to be here today. None of us in the Texas Neighborhood Coalition wants to be here,” said Catherine Parker, a Plano resident and a leader in Plano’s chapter of the Texas Neighborhood Coalition. “We have been talking to you for nearly a year about short-term rentals. We keep telling you that on any given day something terrible can and will happen. … Well that day has come.”
Plano Police Chief Ed Drain also spoke and said the property was registered with Airbnb and Vrbo, though the listing has since been removed from both websites.
Before the shooting, several neighbors had already called police with noise complaints concerning a party happening at the home.
Plano police public information officer Jessica Chapman told The News that no arrests have been made in connection with the shooting.
Residents and members of the Plano Texas Neighborhood Coalition have worked to ban short-term rentals — which are non-owner occupied properties rented out for 30 days or less — in single-family residential neighborhoods. Community members say the properties operate like hotels and violate Plano’s zoning laws.
They want the Plano City Council to adopt ordinances like those in Arlington, where short-term rentals have been prohibited in single-family residential areas and must be registered by the city. In Arlington, short-term rentals can only operate in the city’s entertainment district, where they must comply with regulations.
Eight residents addressed the council Monday night, and many became emotional and received applause from their neighbors.
“Please put yourself in my situation,” Sanchez tearfully told the council. “It could have been your daughter, your son, your sister, your mother. It could have been you. So let’s prevent that from happening.”
Plano Mayor John Muns apologized to the residents and assured them the council is working to solve the issue. Muns said the issue of short-term rentals will be on the agenda for the first meeting in April.
Paige Palmer, another Oakwood Glen neighbor, reached out to TNC and its leader, Bill France, after the incident. Palmer caught the shooting on video through her Ring doorbell system. The sounds of people yelling and several rounds of gunfire can be heard on the video Palmer provided to The News.
Palmer and her neighbors Tim and Jorja Landauer said they called the police earlier, around 12:30 a.m. Sunday after Jorja was awakened by the noise from the party at the rental property.
“There were all these kids hanging out of the doors and windows of their cars screaming and cussing,” Jorja told The News.
According to Tim Landauer, the police came and asked the people at the party to settle down. The Landauers said they learned later that two cars passed and shot at each other.
“When all the gunshots were running, I was like ‘Oh my gosh,’ and I suddenly just hit the ground because I was terrified that one of us was going to get hit, " Jorja Landauer said.
The Landauers said when they learned of the short-term rental home two houses down, they weren’t happy. Tim said they’ve lived problem-free in their home for 23 years, and within six months of the short-term rental opening, gunfire came to the neighborhood.
Palmer said she called the police in January because of a party at the same house. Neighbors say trash from the property has spilled over into their yards, and the gate to the pool remains open, which can be a safety hazard for children.
“When you contact the owner, she’s very nonchalant,” said Jorja Landauer.
The owner of the rental, which had previously been listed on Airbnb and Vrbo, apologized to the neighbors and told Fox4news that the booking Saturday was made through Vrbo. Jennifer Xiao told Fox4news via a written statement, “First of all, I need to say sorry for what has happened. I apologize to my neighbors. I feel very sad for myself and my neighborhood.”
Xiao expressed to Fox4news disappointment with the online booking agency.
“I’m so angry about how Vrbo handled this case. I called Vrbo customer service immediately for help. But after I reported the shooting, they just kept asking me to provide evidence.” John Green, a 27-year resident of Oakwood Glen, told The News that he and his neighbors believe the owner of the home — painted white among mostly red brick houses — bought it for too much, renovated it and couldn’t sell it, so they started renting it out.
The four-bedroom, three-bathroom, 3,275-square-foot home is listed at $986,000, according to Redfin, Realtor.com and Zillow. The home’s Redfin profile says it was remodeled in 2022. Community members say the listing price is high for the neighborhood.
“We don’t need it,” Green said. “I’m sorry you made some bad decisions, but we shouldn’t be the victims of your bad decisions.”
City Council members have previously said they are working on the issue, but want to be careful not to infringe on the property rights of short-term rental owners. Plano collects a hotel occupancy tax from the properties.
Terri Frazier, who lives next door to the home, is frustrated by the city’s stance. She said one night during a quieter party at the short-term rental property, a drunk man relieved himself on her front lawn.
“These are the property rights we’re trying to protect?” Frazier told The News. " … If you want the money, fine. Make it owner-occupied or owner-adjacent or an owner has to be present at the party.”
Reveal said he just wants his family to be safe.
He said it’s been difficult trying to explain to his 3-year-old what happened. He said he and his wife have convinced their daughter that “Sheriff Callie,” one of her favorite cartoon characters, chased away the people with guns.
“I hope that this is just a freak accident and never occurs again,” Reveal said.
Myah Taylor, Collin County Reporter. Myah Taylor covers Collin County with an emphasis on Plano. She formerly worked as a fall sports intern covering high school football for The Dallas Morning News. Taylor is a 2022 graduate of the University of Texas at Austin. Before arriving in Dallas, she held internships with the Austin American-Statesman, Yahoo Sports and the Los Angeles Times.