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Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please

CN for the background story: The neighbor who lives below me yells a lot. I went one morning to tell him to please be quiet and he spent 30 min telling me some creepy and incoherent things (neighbors plotting against him, being in the matrix, etc). I called EPS a couple hours later but apparently waited too long and they told me to wait until he yells again and then call 911.

Now for the update...

So he hasn't yelled since :(. But he did start leaving roses on my door step and on my car. I also ran into him once and he told me "seeing you is like a breath of fresh air... for all the right reasons." Fri and Sat I was out of town and he didn't leave any roses anywhere but on Sun FI walked outside to find a small circle of yellow rose petals with a pile of white powder in the middle. We wanted to go to the police but felt we didn't have evidence because we didn't actually see him put anything anywhere and just "knowing" it's him wouldn't be enough. Then this morning I woke up to this stuck in my car window:


Since he signed his name we though this would be enough, and so FI came home from work and we went to the police station together. Bad idea I guess. The police were basically annoyed with us and told us we still couldn't prove it was him and he didn't do anything illegal (and yes I did tell them the back story). They said the best they could do was if we call 311 (the non emergency number) a cop could come by when he had time for a civil standby which pretty much means he just stands there while we tell the neighbor to stop.

So here is the dilemma: Since the cop can't do anything, I'm afraid that if we use the civil standby our neighbor will be like "why did you call the cops first before coming and talking to me?" and it will piss him off and then we will be in a worse place than we started. AKA with a now angry and not mentally healthy neighbor. I kind of want to tell him to stop on our own first and call the cops if he doesn't.

FI feels that it can't hurt to have backup, especially because we don't know how the neighbor will react when we talk to him, and better to be safe than sorry. What would you guys do?
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Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please

  • Move. Seriously.
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  • In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please:
    [QUOTE]Move. Seriously.
    Posted by JenGin74[/QUOTE]

    We are looking, no joke.
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  • Are there any anti-stalking laws where you live (i'm guessing no, since the cops didn't mention it)? Can you tell the HOA that he is harrassing you? (If I remember correctly you own and there is an HOA, right?)

    I'm sorry you are going through this. It is really scary. I would make sure your home is secure and do not walk around alone. It sucks that you have to deal with that. It seems that too often in these situations the cops don't do anything until something bad happens and I really hope that's not the case with you.
  • reilsreils member
    1000 Comments
    I'd move. I don't think you can win this one. He is going to be upset no matter what you do and he doesn't seem stable so there's no telling how he might react. 
  • In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please : We are looking, no joke.
    Posted by alyssag721[/QUOTE]


    I think the sooner you can get out of there, the better. That's stalker behavior and you don't want any parts of that.
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  • In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please:
    [QUOTE]Move. Seriously.
    Posted by JenGin74[/QUOTE]

    Yep.  I would.

    Unfortunately it doesn't sound like law enforcement can help you - not because they don't want to, but because there isn't any cause just yet.  It's unfortunate though, because I can totally see this getting out of hand and usually by that time, unnecessary trauma (because c'mon - this is creepy stalker shiit) would really do a number on you. 

    I'd honest to God move.  That note makes my skin crawl.
    panther
  • I think the point of a civil standby is so the police presence lends some more oomph to your request, and so you've got some protection if neighbor goes bsc right then and there.  If you think neighbor won't go bsc in your face, but there might be problems later if police are there, then I'd try talking to him first with your FI there (and maybe with a tape recorder in your pocket). 

    If you think neighbor might go bsc when you talk with him, then a civil standby might be in order. 


    What is it exactly that you want the police to do?  Arrest him?  Tell him to stop giving you flowers?  Figure out what the mysterious powder is?

    Have you tried calling in a wellness check when he's mid-rant?  Is it loud enough that they could hear through the phone?
  • In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please : Yep.  I would. Unfortunately it doesn't sound like law enforcement can help you - not because they don't want to, but because there isn't any cause just yet.  It's unfortunate though, because I can totally see this getting out of hand and usually by that time, unnecessary trauma (because c'mon - this is creepy stalker shiit) would really do a number on you.  I'd honest to God move.  That note makes my skin crawl.
    Posted by AllAboutTheBenjamin[/QUOTE]


    Yup. I don't think she should wait until she's physically assaulted (not trying to scare you, but I'm sure you know it's possible)

    It sucks that the guy has to do something major before the police will pay attention.
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  • Holy, creepy.

    I can't believe the police are being so laissez-faire about this. I think you and FI speaking with him may be a worthwhile avenue, but I'd be documenting everything with the police no matter how much it irritates them.
  • That sucks.  You guys own?  That sucks even more.  I'd definitely move as soon as possible, but that's much harder when you own vs. rent.

    I think I'd probalby do the police standby thing.  Better to be safe than sorry.  If he does react badly, you have a police witness which might help if you need to take legal measures.

    He sounds so scary.  I'm shocked the police didn't take it seriously.  That last line is scary.   I'm sorry for you and I hope he loses interest and stops soon! 
  • In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please:
    [QUOTE]What is it exactly that you want the police to do?  Arrest him?  Tell him to stop giving you flowers?  Figure out what the mysterious powder is? Have you tried calling in a wellness check when he's mid-rant?  Is it loud enough that they could hear through the phone?
    Posted by pirategal03[/QUOTE]

    I have no idea what I want the police to do. I guess best case scenario is they would see he is not mentally competent and send him to get mental help. He hasn't gone on a crazy rant since, so I can't call anyone. 
    I just got off the phone with my mom and she suggested leaving a very nice note saying basically thanks but no thanks so he can react in private. I also agree with you all and we are going in a couple min to go talk to the HOA. My mom says I can move back in with her until we find a new place if we don't feel safe here.
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  • Move, seriously.

    This person obviously is mentally disturbed, and you do not want to wait around and find out if it goes south. These stories frustrate me so badly because you are seeking help and really are not getting any. I understand that the neighbor hasn't done anything in the eyes of the law that justifies action, but come on.

    I'm really sorry you're going through this. At least contact your apartment management, I would think they have some rules against this.

    Last thing..if it were me, I would avoid being home alone at all costs. :-/
    5/27/12
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  • edited May 2011
    Being a cop myself, I'm a little surprised they didn't take any sort of action given the back story. I would have definitely done something. I agree with writing a note and letting him handle it privately and if he throws himself into a rage over it then call 911. Seriously though, you need to find somewhere else to live and it's good that you're looking. Maybe (if it's possible) you can step up the search? Unfortunately, this type of thing doesn't usually "go away" which seems to be the general consensus of the police officers in your local department.

    EDIT: in our district, we're required to talk to both parties at the very least
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  • Ugh, how very very unnerving.  
  • Did the police at least document anything when you went in?  I had an issue with a neighbor several years ago and called in to the non-emergency line and filed basically a "no action requested" (I'm sorry I can't remember the actual term) report.  If I had to eventually call non-emergency again or 911, the report would pop up automatically letting responding officers know there was a history of problems. 
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  • They did document us at least coming in. Here is the note we are leaving:

    Cliff,

    I do not think that being friends would be appropriate. Please understand that I am in a committed relationship and while I appreciate your sentiment, this would not be acceptable to me or to my fiancé. Please discontinue the flowers, the notes, and any other gestures as this situation has made Anthony and I feel extremely uncomfortable. We are thankful for your understanding and cooperation.

    Then we both signed and dated it. 

    We are headed now to the office and to leave this on their door.

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  • CellesCelles member
    2500 Comments Combo Breaker
    edited May 2011
    That's kind of creepy.  O.o

    Still... Have you tried telling your neighbor that you aren't interested in a friendship? Or that it is inappropriate for him to be leaving flowers and love notes on your doorstep when you are in a relationship?  It doesn't really surprise me that the police aren't eager to become involved: creeping you out and leaving notes and flowers aren't exactly illegal, and it doesn't sound as if you've made it explicit to your neighbor that the attention is unwanted. It had to be persistent and unwelcome before it becomes stalking or harassment, and it doesn't sound like it's at that point yet.

    Seriously. I'd tell the dude once -- during daylight hours, outside, with your FI present -- that you aren't interested in his overtures of friendship. If that isn't enough to make him leave you alone, take the police up on their offer of civil standby. Then move.

    eta - You updated while I was typing. Good note. :)
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  • Do you think he would get violent with your FI?  Like he's the only thing between you two or something?  That might be something to be extra cautious about.
  • I think your note looks good and everything but not matter what, I'd still look into moving ASAP. Even if you give him the note, there is no way to know if he will react poorly again later on. If I were you, I'd take your mom up on her offer to stay with her until you find a new place. I'm sorry you're going through this, that is just beyond creepy and unnerving.
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  • In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please:
    [QUOTE]Do you think he would get violent with your FI?  Like he's the only thing between you two or something?  That might be something to be extra cautious about.
    Posted by kimheartsscott[/QUOTE]

    He has never been anything but kind (albeit odd) to either of us. Then again I have heard his rants and cussing downstairs and so I know he is capable of getting very angry. I tried to make the note sound like it was both of us that were uncomfortable. I honestly just don't know... his brain is a mystery to me and I have never been in a situation like this before.
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  • Thanks everyone for your help, and your concern. I will definitely be moving ASAP. I graduate on Fri so I will have plenty of time to be looking. But really, it helps to see what you all have to say, I feel like it's hard to look at this logically because I am so freaked.
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  • In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please:
    [QUOTE]If you haven't already left to put the note on his door, I'd scan it into your computer so you have a copy of what you wrote him. Or take a pic of it like you did the Post-it he left you.
    Posted by ILoveMilkDuds[/QUOTE]

    Already done :) I saved it to my computer and we have a copy of the signed version
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  • OMG Alyssa, I'm so sorry this is happening! I'm a little miffed the police didn't take it more seriously, imo this is actually kind of a big deal. You never know what a person like this will do next. Seriously, the white powder part? That would have made me call the cops pronto, that is messed UP. 

    I'm with Duds, after the note, if he continues to bug you in ANY way, even glares or unsigned notes, call your housing association ASAP. I don't really think you should have to move (although I realize this is the reality), I want him to move!
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  • In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please:
    [QUOTE]Are there any anti-stalking laws where you live (i'm guessing no, since the cops didn't mention it)? Can you tell the HOA that he is harrassing you? (If I remember correctly you own and there is an HOA, right?)Posted by Brandiewine11[/QUOTE]

    This? My sister dealt with a stalking situation. A man had been watching her through her ground level bedroom window for god knows how long. One morning after getting ready for work, she walked out to her car, and he walked out from the other side of her house where her bedroom was, and she made eye contact with him. She called police, nothing happened, then THE NEXT DAY a neighbor saw the guy standing outside her window in the early morning hours, and called the police. The neighbor got the guy's license plate, and the cops were able to look him up and he had a record, and she got a restraining order against him, and his place of employment even intervened. It was really scary. My point is that it took someone else witnessing it in order for anything to be done. I know my sister felt really helpless and violated. She eventually moved, but it took a while.
    I would move as soon as you possibly can. In the meantime, like others said, don't be there alone at all, ever. If possible, be escorted to and from your car. Call the police every single time something happens so it continues to be documented. Don't feel like you're annoying them, it's their damn job. This guy's preoccupation could, or may have already turned into an obsession, which is not good at all. And you're right that he may become angry if the police approach him.
    Has a mental health agency of some sort been contacted to check on him?
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  • Did you contact Social Services at all? I would still get in touch with them, no matter how many hoops they make you jump through.
     
     Sometimes people build up relationships in their mind. Obviously this is occuring with your nieghbor. You can't tell how he will react to this note, but I think an alarm system is in order until you can move. I would also explain WHY you are moving to the landlord.
     Don't answer the door without knowing for sure who it is. Don't walk to or from your apartment by yourself.

    I know this sounds melodramatic, but this is serious.

    Could you and FI stay somewhere else for a few days?
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  • In Response to Re: Neighbor Update - Need Advice Please:
    [QUOTE] Call the police every single time something happens so it continues to be documented. Don't feel like you're annoying them, it's their damn job. 
    Posted by cdavislynn[/QUOTE]

    Yep, this. Everyone has a right to feel safe in their own homes. Don't feel bad about calling.
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  • Also, whenever I'm alone I walk with my keys between my knuckles. If someone tries to grab you, you punch them with your keys. Just sayin.
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  • My FI gave me his knife and is escorting me to my car, etc until we move. I contacted the police, EPS and the HOA (our office manager said she would speak to the ex-wife and keep her eyes out as well). Would social services be of any help? I do not know much about what they provide. In the meantime I am armed and we are looking for new places. I promised FI that if we saw any sign of anything, a flower, a weird glance, anything, then I would take my mom up on her offer and move in with them for the time being, but right now I am not ready to be scared out of my own home. I will be extra careful.
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  • I recommend buying mace to carry with you on your keys.  You can order it from many websites and I think even get it in certain stores for ~$25.  I haven't had any previous issues but carry it with me for comfort sake--it's easier to grab and spray than to use a knife or most other weapons in self defense.
    Anniversary
  • I'd be nervous to leave a note just because of the backlash of his unstableness. 

    I'm not going to lie, I'm a little disappointed in the police..They should have at least done a wellness check on him especially since he has said some questionable things about another neighbors children.
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