To call the police or the council?
FlamingoFlower · 13/07/2017 10:57
I live in a lovely little street, mostly retired people or families live here, nice and quiet, no crime problems, you get the picture...
Anyway - I live in a semi and the house attached to me is now empty - I won't go into too much detail as it may out me but to cut a long story short the property is in need of massive repair and was deemed unfit for the family to live in and the council moved them into another house - (its a privately owned house but the tenants were on housing benefit)
The boyfriend of the woman living there was a major drug dealer and used to come and go at all hours.
Anyway, the property became empty a few months ago and no -one has returned there for any maintenance or upkeep - the garden has grown totally wild and overgrowing into my property - ragwort, brambles, the lot. Lots of old furniture dumped out the back, tvs, gas bottles etc etc.
SO - last night I heard a noise next door, just past midnight, was in bed but awake, I jumped out of bed as it sounded like there was someone in my property walking around but I then heard the distinctive noise of the fitted wardrobe door being opened in next doors back bedroom - its a specific noise that I used to hear when the woman was getting up in the morning or last thing at night, the doors didn't open properly so had to be sort of forced and they creaked, and this was the noise I heard.
I popped my head through the curtains to find a car parked outside and a youngish (late 20's early 30s?) boy in a baseball cap sat slouched in the drivers seat as if trying to hide his face.
There are no curtains or blinds in the house and I could see a torch being shone as this second person was walking around the house.
The boy then quickly left the house (locking it behind him with a key) and jumped in the car and off they sped.
He must have been in there for no more than 5 minutes.
Here is where it gets complicated.. the "landlord" doesn't live around here - he lives about 10/15 miles away and I decided to contact him last night as I was quite worried about what had just happened as it was so late at night and I had never seen these boys before, but the number has been disconnected.
I spoke to a neighbour this morning who said they think its someone stashing their drugs in an empty house and seeing as the landlord never got the locks changed, wouldn't be surprised if the guy that used to live there had given a key to his mates to hide their drugs in the empty house. This would make the most sense, there are no belongings in the house so its not as if they are just popping back to pick up some items.
Neighbours also heard through the grapevine that the landlord had just been done for some crime and was awaiting to be sentenced...
SO.. being as I cant call the landlord and let him know should I call the police or the council? OH says I should wait until it happens again but I may be asleep next time as I was only awake last night as I got home pretty late, I would usually be asleep at the time they came around.
WWYD? If it does happen again the police won't get there in time as they are literally in and out and if there are no signs of a forced entry (which there wouldn't be as this person has a key) then surely as its privately owned and landlord probably wont be around for too much longer I'm assuming they won't investigate?
Usually I would mind my own business with other peoples houses but as I live alone and this house is attached to mine it's making me pretty nervous especially as its very cloak and dagger turning up when the street lights go off and they probably think most people would be asleep
Secondly - the garden issue, am I within my rights to just pop over my fence and strim down the garden as the brambles are busting through my fence and breaking it or do I need to report this to someone too?
Birdsgottaf1y · 13/07/2017 11:02
Stop speaking to the Neighbours, tell them that you've forgotten about it, or there might be ramifications.
Reporting it could bring trouble to your door, so consider that.
If it is the previous tenant and he is 'a major drug dealer', then no-one is going near to that house except them an drew they don't want any bother.
FlamingoFlower · 13/07/2017 11:11
I was going to phone the police last night but I was concerned that as this wasn't a forced entry I might get a telling off for wasting police time as in their eyes it could have been the landlord asking someone to go there for any reason. If they'd had opened a window etc I would have straight away.
Birdsgottaf1y · 13/07/2017 11:13
"" Call each time it happens and encourage others that see or hear anything suspicious to do the same.""
Don't do that. If a neighbour comments then say "did you report it", but nothing else.
You don't want to put yourself in the firing line of dealers. It isn't like on television we're it's easily sorted out.
MadMags · 13/07/2017 11:28
I'm from an area that's always on the news for drug related crime; shootings etc.
We learned very early that you keep your head down and you don't gossip.
I would report it if it happens again, I'm not saying do nothing. But I would certainly not be discussing it with neighbours! And if a neighbour brought it up again I would say you've forgotten all about it and haven't seen anything since!
YetAnotherSpartacus · 13/07/2017 11:40
Push council for the house to be cleaned up and / or secured. Ask to have engineering and other safety checks on things like stability and wiring (for your own safety).
Report what you saw anonymously to CrimeStoppers.
Secure your own house with proper deadlocks on doors and windows, an alarm system and window shutters if you can fit them.
JaneEyre70 · 13/07/2017 11:42
I'd phone 101 and explain that you heard noises in the property last night, saw a car and think that someone still has access and that you can't contact the landlord. And let them deal with it. If he hasn't changed the locks, then more fool him really. Regarding the brambles, throw some weedkiller over them!
FlamingoFlower · 13/07/2017 11:47
Jane- I did actually throw a load of weedkiller over which did the trick for about a week when more grew! expensive business to just keep throwing weedkiller over they need to be got rid of properly I think which I don't have the expertise to do...
HurtleTheTurtle · 13/07/2017 11:49
It's difficult for you to remain truly anonymous now that you've discussed it with a neighbour.
Crimestoppers allows you to report anonymously, but it does mean that you can't give evidence in court, witness descriptions, etc. These can be done anonymously in court, but that decision lies with the CPS after people have been arrested or charged.
Do not try and contact the landlord again as he may be involved with the drug dealing- how else have they managed to get a set of keys? I guess it's feasible that one set of keys went missing or were cut without landlord's knowledge.
Out of curiosity, do the adjoining walls feel warm?
FlamingoFlower · 13/07/2017 11:59
Hurtle - yeah it could be either the landlord in on it or the last tenants boyfriend giving out keys to everyone as I know him and the landlord did not get along and he hasn't changed the locks.
I haven't noticed if the walls feel warm but if you're saying what I think you're saying then I don't think that is the case as I know they are on an electric meter where you have to top it up which from what I gather isn't cheap to keep loading up, and as there are no windows or blinds in the property it would be pretty obvious that was going on I assume?
Or am I on the wrong wavelength and you are thinking of something else?
HurtleTheTurtle · 13/07/2017 12:29
We were on the same wavelength, but farms tend to be in cellars or in loft spaces (I have no idea if your house has either; it's probably best not to clarify either).
It's really easy to bypass electricity meters...
However, it would also smell.
For peace of mind you could walk into your police station and hypothetically discuss if they would be able to keep your identity hidden if you did report such a crime with the staff.
FlamingoFlower · 13/07/2017 12:38
yeah it doesn't smell in there - when the previous tenants were living there it absolutely reeked of the stuff but nothing since they've left.
I just reckon since there's been lots of raids going on in other areas of my town they might be hiding their stash to keep it safe so if they get raided then they wont get found out.. that's my theory anyway!
To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.