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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: UK Law
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Experience:  Over 5 years in practice.
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I have a neighbour (from hell) who is telling lies about me

Customer Question

I have a neighbour (from hell) who is telling lies about me and trying to incite my neighbours to complain to the council. I live on my own and do not like confrontational but she is making my life a misery and I feel uncomfortable inside my own home. she is constantly watching me and complained to the council previously about me feeding a fox, this was true but I have not done this since receiving a council letter around September 2010, she is telling other neighbours to complain that I am still feeding them and today I have got another letter from the council again. I have a CCTV camera (pointed at my own property) due to 2 tyres being slashed on a friends car that was parked outside my house. She had her daughter who lives opposite contact the Police saying that I was some sort of pervert and my camera was filming children, the Police called round and checked the camera and told me that I was doing nothing wrong and confirmed that it was only covering my property, her mother (my neighbour) then started telling people in my close that the police were investigating me over this. The latest was that someone told me that she was saying various things about me to other neighbours, I checked my CCTV to see if there was anything I could overhear and although it did not video anyone on my property it can be clearly heard on the tape her telling my neighbours that she is going to "GET" my white cat, I take that to mean that she mean some harm to her, I do not let her out when i am at work as I have had another cat disappear at some point and although I have no proof, it woulld not surprise me if she had done something. She is heard on the tape telling neighbours to report me for feeding the foxes, although none of them could have any proof of this as I have not done this since the previous time, she asks one neighbour who has been in my house a number of times about whether I still have my rabbit and that I kept it in a bedroom, she claims that there was a man in my garden talking to me but she didn't know what he was there for. to be honest it is none of her business who comes and goes to my house. She has also told neighbours that in the early hours of the morning I went to my bin cupboard (next to front door) 8 times in the night and i kept banging the door. This is actually the neighbour on the other side of me who has a cat flap in her front door and 2 cats who are in and out during the night and this is what the banging is that she is talking about. She is clearly heard on the tape saying that she cannot see me but she lies awake listening. One night my other cat didn't come home after I let her out and was nowhere to be seen when I went to bed, she is on special medication which she must have morning and evening and I was extremely worried that she had missed this. I awoke in the night and looking out of my bedroom window saw her walking across the close where I live, I did not want to call out to her and give my neighbour any reason to say that I was noisy, so I got dressed and went out to get her. low and behold on my way back with her she was up at the window shouting and calling me names. I told her (even though I shouldn't have to explain myself) that I was looking for my cat and then went indoors. Again she was telling people and exagerating what happened.

Another occassion i asked her politely if her daughter could move her car back a little bit so that I could park outside my house, to this I was subjected to her screaming at me telling me and everyone else in the street that I was not "right in the head", again this is on tape, nd then when her husband came home from work he stormed up to my front door screaming at me and telling me i am not wanted round here.

I am at the end of my tether with this and want to know what I can do, without actually confronting them as on the rare occassion i did it made matters worse.

I am not perfect, but I mind my own business and have to put up with more than my fair share of noise from their house, but as I am a private person I have never complained even though they seem to shout rather than talk calmly.

As it is only my word against theirs I would appreciate some advise as to how I can enjoy the quiet enjoyment of my own home without this women spreading malicious gossip about me.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: UK Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.

Hi

Thank you for your question. I will try to help with this.

 

What exactly would you like to know about this?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I want to know what I can do to put a stop to this women going round spreading untruth gossip about me. I want to be able to live peacefully in my own home. I am scared to say anything to her direct as this is exactly what she wants to make a show in the street.

Do I need to take the evidence I have on tape to a solicitor or the police, I feel that this is harassment or intimidation, can the courts do anything to stop her behaving like this. Surely this is anti social behaviour of something similar and there must be some way that I can protect my good name and not have her slander me to all and sundry.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.

OK. Can we try to narrow down this issue then.

Is the essence of this that you say she is telling other people things about you that are untrue?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
She is telling people things that are untrue, she is encouraging other people to make unfounded claims to the council about me, along with the report to the Police intimating that I am some kind of pervert.

I should not have to be subjected to sneers and looks from her friends etc who do not know me and have only heard whatever lies she comes out with and I do not know how to defend my name

I want to stop her invasion on my privacy and stop these untrue complaints that she makes about me

Surely there are laws to protect me from this
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.

There is no offence in telling lies in itself. If she actually does make any false reports then she can be prosecuted for perverting the course of justice but the police would have to be able to prove that she was making a false allegation rather than just one that was rejected. If she encourages others then there is an offence of incitement.

She is allowed to give you unattractive looks I'm afraid. That is not unlawful in any way.

In relation to untruths, they may amount to defamation of character for which you can sue. That will cost in excess of £25,000 and there is no legal aid however.

I'm happy to discuss this but please remember to click on accept.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
Can I assist you further?

Please press ACCEPT.

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