Potentially violent neighbour and I am too frightened to go back

by Readers Question

10:53 AM, 12th June 2017
About 2 years ago

Potentially violent neighbour and I am too frightened to go back

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Potentially violent neighbour and I am too frightened to go back

I moved into a housing association property 6 months ago and have had problems with my neighbours since day one.

The property is a house converted into two flats. I live upstairs and the neighbour is below me. I have to enter the property via a door at the front, and then head up the stairs. My only entrance is overlooked by my neighbour’s window. I have a front garden that is also overlooked by the same window. They are loud at 3am and whenever I go into the garden they stare at me through the window and over the side gate.

I have reported these issues to the housing association, but they haven’t done much to prevent this behavior. Well yesterday I got a bit annoyed with the banging and crashing and I popped my head out of my door and said give it a rest and speak to your landlord.

I actually thought I said it so quietly that nobody would hear me. Unfortunately my neighbour did hear my comment and came storming up the stairs. I managed to slam my door and lock it. My neighbour then started to bang hell out of the door. I turned on my laptops webcam and called the housing association.

While on the phone discussing the banging, my neighbour started knocking on the door again. I told him to go away or I will call the police. With that he started to scream and shout f this f that…And he kicked the door while shouting open that f’ing door. He left a big hole in the door.

After ending the call to the housing association I rang the police on 101. They said they would attend within the hour, but that didn’t happen, so I left the property and have no intention of going back while this nutty neighbour is still living there.

The housing association have told me to go back and call the police if he tries to attack me. Considering my only entrance/exit is 2 foot from his door, I would have no time to call police should he decide to pop out and punch me. If I hadn’t shut the door yesterday I am sure he would have kicked me instead of the door.

What can I do to solve this issue. The whole thing was recorded on my laptop and the police still haven’t done anything about it. No arrests no nothing. The housing association and police seem to want another incident. I can’t see any other reason they would suggest I return and call them if he kicks off again. Which I’m sure he will.

After thinking and thinking and thinking, and not being able to get his hands on me, I’m confident he will get angry and set upon me the moment he sees me. The problem with where I live is there are no witnesses about. It is just me and him. unless I have the police on the phone while I enter the property or a camera recording me going in, anything could happen.

If anyone can advise me on what to do it would be very much appreciated. I’ve been forced to sleep on a friends sofa, but this isn’t a long term solution.

Many thanks

Mart



Comments

Neil Patterson

10:59 AM, 12th June 2017
About 2 years ago

Dear Mart,

I am very sorry to hear of your situation and I totally understand your reluctance to go back.

If this was a Private Landlord you would normally report this to the Council so I would do this asap regardless of it being a Housing Association that is the Landlord.

Also as you genuinely fear for your physical safety I would call the police again and be more insistent to see if you can get better advice or action.

HMOLandlady

14:16 PM, 12th June 2017
About 2 years ago

Hi Mart. Whilst this situation isn't great, you are effectively being bullied by your neighbour. Most bullies bark ALOT and are experts in threatening behaviour normally based on their own unhappiness. The problem here is that you're the one who has left. My suggestion would be to find the confidence to return to the property, preferably with a friend or two who can act as witnesses and record any anti-social behaviour. Bullies are not particularly clever, and usually rely on the loudness of their bark to intimidate their victim and gain pleasure when they can see it working. The more you show you're frightened the more this will fuel his attack. I've dealt with many threats but none of them have ever become a physical assault - I stood my ground and let the other person shout it all out until they ran out of energy. Your Housing Association or the Police should recommend mediation and at least this allows you to remain in the property. If the neighbour breaches his tenancy agreement or the peace via anti-social behaviour for which you have evidence, then the HA and Police will be able to act. Alternatively, you could look for other accommodation but please don't stay frightened hiding out on a friend's sofa.

Michael Barnes

14:22 PM, 12th June 2017
About 2 years ago

Do you have a friend who could accompany you home, and possibly stay for a few days?

Also, a personal video camera (one you wear) might help gather evidence?

Chris Daniel

19:35 PM, 12th June 2017
About 2 years ago

Mart,
Are you reporting the instances as L.A's have a CAT ( not the fluffy kind that meows, )
I am of course referring to a Community Action Trigger CAT, if there are 3 instances / reports of Anti-Social Behaviour, this invokes a CAT which is basically a multi-agency meeting to look at what measures each of the public services can take to address it and halt it.
Look up your Local Authorities cat 😉
Hope this is of help.

Robert Mellors

21:53 PM, 12th June 2017
About 2 years ago

Hi Mart

What do YOU want to happen? e.g. Do you wish to return to the flat? Do you wish to get rehoused somewhere else? Do you want to get the neighbour arrested? Do you want mediation so that you can settle your differences and live in peace? - The point is that what action you need to take will depend on what outcome you want, so you need to be clear about what it is that you want to happen. Once you decide what outcome you want, then we may be able to advise on how to achieve this.

Mart B

15:36 PM, 15th June 2017
About 2 years ago

Hi all and thanks for your replies. Since making my post and submitting it here, I went back to my flat this past weekend. Just two days after having my front door kicked in. Unfortunately my friend and I were about to enter via the communal door when my neighbour came out of nowhere and assaulted me. I hit my head and he was arrested. The police questioned him about the assault and criminal damage, and then released him under investigation. They told me they didn't do bail these days and therefore couldn't put conditions in place to stop my neighbour coming near me. However they did say they would arrest him again if he tries anything similar again. I've been sofa surfing and staying in a tent for the past week. The housing assocition told me I was doing the right thing by staying away. To me that is no different to saying going homeless is for the best. My GP wrote a letter to the housing association asking them to move me somewhere else because I didn't feel safe and because my health was being negatively affected. Of course this didn't do much good. On Monday I put in a formal complaint due to them not taking their duty of care seriously.

I am now considering my next move. After two incidents I doubt I'll be going back to that flat. I think officially registering has homeless may be my only option ???

I assume the council will have to help find me temp accomodation ? I mean in the space of 3 days there have been 2 episodes of violence/aggression, and more violence in the future is a real possibility. People generally aren't happy when they are arrested. I guess its more than likely made my neighbour is more pee'd off than he was before he ended up in a cell.

Knowing where to go from here is difficult. sofa surfing and sleeping in a tent isn't doing me much good. suggestions on how to proceed would be appreciated

Neil Patterson

16:28 PM, 15th June 2017
About 2 years ago

That is terrible sorry Mart.
I have no experience in this area so hope someone has some advice.

HMOLandlady

16:42 PM, 15th June 2017
About 2 years ago

This is shocking behaviour and totally irresponsible of your HA. I suggest you begin with your MP then follow up the complaint and hopefully you've given the HA a copy of the police report of the incident as well as your own record. By the way, which area of the country are you based in? Do you have a Housing Trust nearby?

Mart B

19:00 PM, 15th June 2017
About 2 years ago

Thanks for your input HMOLandlady. I've given the HA police crime reference numbers and they say they are waiting for the police to provide them with further information about these incidents. I'm in Oxfordshire and can't find any housing trusts in the area. I've found the local MP and will contact him asap though. Other than that there doesn't seem much I can do today/tonight, so its back to the tent for a lay down. Before I head out to the fields, I've been trying to find out if its possible to prove my mail is being tampered with. There was a bunch of post in my front door last week and some of the dates were from weeks ago. Postie cannot get past the communal door unless me or my neighbour let them in. And of course I didn't let them in...and although I can't say one way or the other if my neighbour let them in or not. I think its unlikely. Its unlikely because my neighbour doesn't even have a doorbell on the communal door and since day one he has been happy to ignore most people when they bang on the door. he basically lets me play bellboy. Anyways I went onto the british gas website to find out when my next bill was due, and its due in 3 days time. Apparently they posted the bill weeks ago. I'm now wondering what is going on, and after these issues with neighbour, I wonder if they have been hiding my post.


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