to have reported neighbour to the police? Sorry, slightly convoluted!

(58 Posts)
TeenTwinsToddlerandTiaras Sat 11-May-13 15:15:09

On 101 obviously because I feel he is harassing me. I am not usually one to involve the police in neighbourhood disputes and it feels a bit petty to me so would like other views.

Council moved us into a 2nd floor flat last year. I have 4 DCs, youngest aged 2. We did not bid on this property, council forced us to take it or otherwise they would evict us from the temp house they had put us into as we were homeless.

I initially chatted and introduced myself to ground floor neighbour (Dave, he has a 3 bed flat to himself but I digress) as I wanted to make the best of it and hoped the neighbours would be friendly.

After a few days he started talking about a former neighbour who lived below us, telling me that she had made loads of complaints about him to the council regarding the 'shared garden'. He has put up radio aerials as he is a CB buff, one of them is a spiky contraption, loads of metal rods sticking out about 5 ft off the ground. Anyway, he was referring to this woman as a 'silly bitch' 'uptight cow' etc and saying how she thought she could get 'one over' on him but 'I've lived here for 30 years' blah blah blah. He also put a padlock on the 'shared' garden gate as druggies congregate there apparently but said I could pay for my own key if I wanted one. I had already decided that DCs would not be going in the garden due to the aerials and the fact that the 2 flats below would be overlooking them and I did not know who the neighbours were.

Shortly after that, Dave told me that he found some Lego in the garden (obviously my DCs, DS2 must have thrown it out of the window) but he would not give it back as it would probably get thrown again hmm. I ignored.

When the weather got warmer, I set up a water table for my toddler to pour water and splash in on the balcony. There is a drainage hole in the side of the balconies for water to run into a overflow pipe which then slowly drips down onto the garden on the back balcony and the path at the front balcony. I noticed 'Dave' standing below my balcony swearing to himself ('what the fuck' etc) when my toddler had poured some water onto the balcony and it was draining off. I also used to wash down the balconies with a bucket of water when they got dusty. This sent Dave nuts although he was rarely in the garden and I never did it if he was out there. He told me that I should not be pouring water on the balcony as the drainage pipe is for rainwater only and he was going to complain to the council. The council later sent me a letter telling me not to 'throw water over the side of the balcony' which I was not doing anyway. So I just thought hmm.

From that point on, I decided to ignore Dave as he is obviously an arse. This was last summer.

Last Friday, myself and DC were going in the front door of the flat block when the toddler shut the main front door which has been pulled open (Dave had taken it upon himself to screw hooks onto the front and rear entrance doors so he could keep them all wide open for what reason I know not). Dave, who was in his garage across the road, started shouting loudly 'that little fucking cunt shuts that door again and I'll have him'. I was shocked but ignored and walked on.

On Monday, I scrubbed my back balcony for the first time since last summer and poured a few buckets off water over it. I later get into my car and wonder why the windscreen is filthy with mud all over it. I get out and notice that it looks like someone has chucked mud and water all over the car. I know it immediately it was Dave so I knocked on his door and asked what he'd thrown over my car. He admitted it and told me 'you've upset everyone in this block and you need to watch it cos you need to live here' actually spitting with rage and shaking. I decide to log it with the police because my older DCs witnessed all this and were a bit shaken. I also informed the council who want a meeting with me next week.

Dave has since covered the 'shared' garden's patio below my balcony with tarp!

Today, I parked up with DCs and as I get out of the car, Dave and another neighbour are standing at his van, Dave says 'don't you look at me or I'll have yer'. I told him I wont be bullied by him and I have informed the council so he says 'go on then, fucking go on, arrogant cow'. I ask him to repeat what he said so he says 'I did'nt say anything did I and I've got a witness', this to the old man who lives opposite him.

I have reported to the police again. They said they would come out but have not.

The neighbours (a single man and his adult son) below me have shouted up before about my toddler, 'shut up you little shit' when he's had a tantrum. Also heard them shouting about 'the fucking cunts upstairs' and throwing things about. Son has violent rows with his girlfriend in his flat and outside late at night waking up the DCs. He also played loud bass music (floor shaking) during the day, so loud I could'nt hear the TV and I knocked a few times and asked him politely to turn it down. He used to get up at around 11am, put the music on and keep it on until around 2pm every fucking day while his dad was out at work. Toddler could not nap. He told me he can play music if he likes in the day. Eventually stopped a few months ago. I am assuming that is how I 'upset' them. Oh they also chain a bike to the rails on the landing outside their flat which makes it difficult to walk through with bags etc so I asked the council to get them to move it (I was told I could not leave a buggy on the landing when I moved in). They did for about a week then put it back.

I am an tenterhooks with the DCs making noise and even more stressed than usual if that is possible. I feel panicky about leaving my flat and am avoiding it as Dave is always outside. I feel silly contacting police though. AIBU?

LIZS Sat 11-May-13 15:19:15

Assuming they are also council tenants I think the council housing department might be a better route.

Hummuschocolate Sat 11-May-13 15:20:37

No you're need being unreasonable. It might be a good idea to get advice from Shelter or Citizens Advice Bureau too.

OwlinaTree Sat 11-May-13 15:24:14

I think you need to try to be rehoused. Speak to CAB. Start writing down and photographing things that are happening and seek some help.

Hope it works out well.

ImperialBlether Sat 11-May-13 15:24:15

It sounds really awful. I agree with that the council housing department might be a better bet.

If the police say they will come out and don't, you have to remind them again and again. This is important to you and you have the right to live in peace.

Will you be able to move from there?

fritteringtwit Sat 11-May-13 15:27:44

YADNBU. First thing Id do is find a pair of bolt cutters and cut the padlock off the shared garden and tell him to fuck off if he thinks youre paying for a key. I would also tell the Council that he's effectively nicked the garden for his sole use.

I'd also report the door hooks, as these are clearly a security issue - anyone could wander into the buiding.

Iamsparklyknickers Sat 11-May-13 15:30:04

YANBU, but you're also not dealing with people who sound like they are incapable of reflecting on their own behaviour. If they were all book worms in bed by ten never making a peep I would perhaps see their point about the noise (only because quiet and loud people don't mix well - they still wouldn't be in the right enough to complain).

I think you're options are pretty much limited to logging incidents with the council and start looking for somewhere else. Nightmare neighbours are no fun and things rarely (ime) get resolved without someone leaving.

Make do with sweeping your balcony for now, it's not huge thing to remove the water argument from the equation and tbh I couldn't be bothered arguing about it to prove a point.

HollyBerryBush Sat 11-May-13 15:32:32

This "Dave"? how old is he? coz he sounds like he may have some form of mental illness/dementia

O/T what total plank in the 1960's though blocks of flats would be a good idea? Shoving people in little boxes where they can annoy the bejesus out of each other?

back on topic - I'd be reporting him to the council regarding the garden.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Sat 11-May-13 15:36:47

I also think Dave sounds as if he has mental health problems, and that he is also harrassing you

TeenTwinsToddlerandTiaras Sat 11-May-13 15:37:24

Can I also add that the padlocks were cut off my two sheds a few months ago, shortly after I complained that he'd padlocked the garden.

I know the council will do nothing, that's why I feel I have to log it with the police. They have arranged a meeting but the attitude seems to be that they want to keep HIM happy. We cant move at present and the only option will be private rented which we had to keep moving from before this due to landlords selling.

I cant believe I am having to deal with this on top of everything else sad. Life has been so shit the last few years.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Sat 11-May-13 15:39:03

I don't think it is a mistake to log it with the police. He has threatened you, he sounds unstable and cannot control his temper

TeenTwinsToddlerandTiaras Sat 11-May-13 15:39:33

Sheds had bikes, car roof rack, DCs garden toys, tools in. God knows how long they were unpadlocked for before I noticed.

CaptainSweatPants Sat 11-May-13 15:39:56

I'd be doing everything I could to move
It must be horrid for you to feel scared all the time
Even if they evicted Dave you'd still have the fallout to contend with with all his mates

CelticPixie Sat 11-May-13 15:44:45

Can you not sneak in the garden late at night and smash up his aerials? I'd be so tempted to do that if I was you. What a prick!

You need to keep logging incidents, keep a diary. Evidence if possible with pictures and video clips.

The council is terrible when it comes to their own tenants, but you can speak to cab about this man in relation to Antisocial behaviour.

TeenTwinsToddlerandTiaras Sat 11-May-13 15:48:29

Thanks all. We will have to move. I have been fighting the council since they put us in here. We are at the bottom of the transfer list - 3/4 year wait. The thought of carrying all the bloody furniture down 2 flights of stairs again fills me with dread, not to mention private renting again and the thought of potentially having to move again in 6 months, oh and the inspections and landlords turning up unannounced. Shit what a bloody mess.

Have to go out again now - I am actually scared to ffs! I hate confrontation!

fritteringtwit Sat 11-May-13 15:50:51

Re the shed doors - we have a horizontal metal bars locking ours - there's brackets for them at either end (fixed with coach bolts that cant be unscrewed from the outside, they just have a dome on the outside part) and the bars interlock in the middle and there's a box over where the padlock goes so it cant be cut off. Fiddly but worth it.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 15:54:50

You do realise by involving the police in what essentially is a council issue AFTER he has made repeated complaints against you just makes you look in the wrong its unfortunate but true.

You need to keep a diary log dates times incidents, if you can record him on your phone threatening you then do so or if you can sit on your balcony and record him screaming obscenities directed at your children or you then again do so.

When he's not around photograph the lock on the gate and the hooks on the wall.

Obviously do recordings without him seeing your phone and without telling him.

Oh and before someone jumps in and says that's against the law no it is not,its legal to make a recording of anyone talking as long as its for your own use.

snufflepops Sat 11-May-13 15:56:20

I am horrified to read your post.

Could you contact your local concillor or MP?

You poor thing and your children having to listen to that language.

People will help move the furniture for you if you ask.

My DH is always helping people move - I've volunteered him to others and we can usually get a gang of people to move. grin

AmberLeaf Sat 11-May-13 15:58:59

One solution would be to get the council to do something about that overflow pipe, IME drains on balconies should run down to a thicker pipe that goes right the way into the ground so as to avoid this sort of thing.

But that is only one part of your problem.

When the council wrote to you about 'throwing water over the balcony' did you get back in touch with them with your version?

I agree reporting to the police is not wrong, hopefully you will be able to get your side across when you meet with the council next week.

People like Dave tend not to be open to reason. if he has lived there 30 years, then you probably aren't the first one to have had problems with him.

Calling your toddler a cunt is not on.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 16:14:18

Good point I expect every single previous tenant has been hounded out by him.

But document document document, I can't get my head around people who cause a problem for neighbours but think they themselves are exempt from the rules.

AmberLeaf Sat 11-May-13 16:20:42

Yes to keeping records, however petty it may seem. Engage with the people at the housing office, if Dave has made complaints about you, hear them out and give your side reasonably however much it may P you off! be calm and reasonable.

If he has done this before, then it doesn't take a genius to work out the common denominator is him emphasise how threatened you feel by his threats.

TonysHardWorkDay Sat 11-May-13 16:21:22

Your council housing department should have an anti-social behaviour team. Ring and ask to speak to them directly. They can advise you and also gather evidence themselves to take action about the neighbour. It is likely they have had complaints about him before.

Feel for you as its a horrible way to live.

Hummuschocolate Sat 11-May-13 17:47:00

Shelter gives advice about issues with neighbours aswell as issues with finding suitable housing. They don't just help people who are already homeless. You might find their website and their local services useful, [[http://england.shelter.org.uk/ ]]

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