I’m back! To finish the horribleness I experienced with the Officers and my neighbor. You know, the one with the fence that looks stupid.
Luckily for my neighbor, his relentless pounding on my front door at 7:00 A.M. last Good Friday did not wake my Mother.
When she did wake up I told her what happened and we talked for a long time about the nerve of him and how he wasn’t getting on our property today and we decided that I would compose a Hold Harmless agreement for my neighbor and his workers to sign when they would inevitably come back to call on the fence request.
After all that he’d certainly come back, and when he did I wanted to be ready.
So I drafted the document, revised it 17-77 times and finally printed copies of it the Tuesday after Easter.
I wanted to be ready.
I know exactly where that document is right now in my legal drawer.
But he never came back again.
When I had to call the police.
Because he had workers trespassing in our back yard again.
I loathe the phrase, “it’s better to ask forgiveness than permission.” (And I’m pretty sure that’s my neighbor’s motto in life. Just like it’s the motto of a lot of other men I’ve come across like him in my life.) Why do you think I hate it so much?
Time out. You know, my being drugged and raped by a boyfriend aside.
Time in. I have entitlement issues for sure. But I have some excellent reasons for my irritation surrounding entitlement. (The memoir I’m writing is full of examples of how I was harassed by entitlement.)
Back to Wednesday, I already mentioned what happened but let me be clearer about the chain of events.
Around 8:45 A.M. I was with my Mom in the kitchen before she left for work and I saw a man in my backyard shoving wooden braces into my lawn in an attempt to prop up my neighbor’s fence. I pointed it out to my Mother and went outside to confront the situation.
“Excuse me, Sir,” I yelled as loudly as possible. At first he did nothing, but then he turned around. “You don’t have our permission to do that and you have to stop immediately,” I told him. He replied that he didn’t speak English very well and as I mentioned in my last post shoved a phone in my face. I told the woman on the phone, whoever she was, that he had to leave and they (because a second man entered my property as I was speaking with her) couldn’t be there under any circumstances. She rudely snapped, “I heard you! God!” The man took the phone back and they left my property, but they also left the wooden braces propping up the fence behind. And I knew they would be back because of that.
And I was right.
They entered my property two more times that I am aware of after I had been told I was understood by that nasty person on the phone.
The first time I heard them come back because I had cracked open my back door to snoop for the crunching of leaves.
They returned not only to take the wedged pieces but they also started stealing, yes, stealing good strong wood on my property along the fence line. Theft on top of trespassing. This was around approximately 9:30 A.M. — so — my Mom was at work by then.
I hate not having witnesses.
And I hate to say this even more: I hate not having male witnesses.
If only the Officers hadn’t buddied up with my neighbor so quickly, maybe they would have heard me.
But it’s so difficult to be heard sometimes. Even though you’re very logically and reasonably explaining your safety concerns and how this has happened before and how all your neighbor had to do was sign a paper I spent hours revising just for him. Even though.
Because if I’m a man then me and other men (the Officers) speak the same language of understanding — that stealing, and trespassing, and my concern for liability are all legit.
But because I’m a woman — I’m just hysterical and can’t possibly understand the simple thing that my neighbor is “just doing.”
But I was assaulted. And I mean that literally.
Privacy is a funny thing. I have to assume that everything I’m about to share was intended for me to share since I took the pictures on my property and through a hole in their beast fence.
🚔 🚔 Two cars and two male white Officers would eventually show up at my house, take down my driver’s license information, and become degrading sexist friends with my neighbor who they spoke to for mere seconds, which was all that was needed to dismiss everything I was saying, and, whose license they didn’t need even though he drove to my house, and even though I was just standing in my driveway.
My asshole neighbor can’t even pretend he wasn’t on my property or that he didn’t tell them to do what they did.
All day I endured the sound of their work, watching. If my neighbor had just come over to me he could have signed this Hold Harmless agreement I wrote and this wouldn’t even be a post.
But he either wasn’t home or just didn’t care.
So the last time they would come over I asked them to leave and they ignored me, at my neighbor’s direction. This was after 4:00 P.M.
I was done.
I called my town’s non-emergency police number and began to file my complaint.
I was asked to describe how the trespassers — who were now being called back over now that my neighbor has heard me yell that last time, “get out or I’m calling the police!” — looked — as in what they were wearing, their skin color, hair color, height, etc. — which took an immense amount of time. As the dispatcher struggled to find my address — the call took approximately 10 minutes and by then the neighbor was trying to call me over to him from behind his fence. I paid him no attention whatsoever, except to look a bit in his exact direction to let him know I was going to do what I was doing no matter what he wanted, the entitled prick.
Besides, the operator told me not to interact with anyone I mentioned, including the neighbor, whatsoever.
Once the operator got my address down correctly (FINALLY), two police vehicles showed up in front of my house where I was waiting for them.
So one Officer began to get my statement. He listened to me for a few seconds before the second Officer beckoned him to the end of my driveway where my neighbor had driven over to be even more entitled than he had already been that day.
Since this is exactly what went down next, I’ll repeat: And after this same neighbor motioned them to him — to which they really complied — he spoke no more than 20 words to them — causing the Officers to react orally like this: “Yeah, I got you man, I’ll explain it to her,” and, “We’ll tell her.”
I literally rolled my eyes because I knew how this story was going to end and I was right.
It ended with the Officers attempting to explain property lines and fences to me.
And when I tried to speak up for myself, I was talked over and interrupted. As I refused to concede that nothing wrong had been done that day, the Officers just contributed to change topics and ignored what I had to say about the stealing, the trespassing, how this wasn’t even the first time he’s done this (last Good Friday), and that I am a trained lawyer in real estate and have legitimate concerns about liability.
Their final dismissal was, “well [your neighbor] said they don’t speak English very well so I don’t think they were understanding when you asked them to leave.”
“Then why was I on the phone with a woman who was going to take care of it?!” I wanted to scream. But I could tell with the workers done with the work (say least they better be) and the neighbor now best friends with the Officers, it would be pointless to continue to try plead my case.
They were not listening.
As I said they asked to see my driver’s license, and annoyingly they took down my name and phone number, as if they weren’t going to throw what they’d written on it out.
The Officers said, “well drive over there and we’ll talk to him.” But I have no idea if they actually did, or what would have been said, or why I even bothered calling for help since I couldn’t get any or see any results.
If there is one thing that’s clear: a fence definitely exists.