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Ibelong
05-13-2010, 05:00 PM
I realize this is not a law forum...however I also know there are some smart cookies here. So I have a question for a friend.
What can a person do when they have been repeatedly harassed and terrorized by a neighbor and the cops refuse to do anything about it. Why? The only reason we can figure is that this individual was once a cop. Now not a cop (for attacking this individual in a court room while facing accusations of criminal acts). Now this individual has verbally attacked (threatened to kill) them again, at their place of work, which happened to be on school grounds, in front of witnesses including a state officer. I was hoping that the anti-bullying laws might apply, but the attacker is not a student. Anti-terrorism laws don't seem to apply because they didn't threaten to blow the building up, gas it, etc, but instead threatened to kill a person.
The local law, doesn't want to be bothered. Even though this has been on going, for years, and escalating. This individual has had to resort to putting cameras in her state vehicle which she drives for the school, because her attacker has attempted to run her off the road. Yes, it's bad and local law enforcement doesn't seem to want to be bothered.

Any suggestions?

BenPanced
05-13-2010, 05:28 PM
CALL A LAWYER.

Seriously.

Jamesaritchie
05-13-2010, 05:38 PM
If she hasn't already done so, teh first move is always to file for a restraining order. This allow steh police to actually do something about the problem. There's often a non blood, no foul policy with police departments, and a retraining order change sthis policy. Calling a lawer is also wise move. There are several ways to get this into court. There are also ways to get the police department into court. But your friend must get a lawyer.

I also hope she's carrying some sort of self-protection.

Ibelong
05-13-2010, 05:51 PM
CALL A LAWYER.

Seriously.

This is the thing. A lawyer can/will only get involved if she makes this a civil case against the department. Which isn't going to stop the neighbor. And yes, she has gotten a lawyer before (2 in fact) and they seem to wind up scratching their heads at what can be done. See, she doesn't have the money to go up against the local PD, and going up against the person doing this only works if there are physical damages (so far none). And even then, it takes roughly a 10 grand retainer to get anything done. She's tried letters, etc, wasting retainers for things like that, to no avail.

Ibelong
05-13-2010, 05:52 PM
If she hasn't already done so, teh first move is always to file for a restraining order. This allow steh police to actually do something about the problem. There's often a non blood, no foul policy with police departments, and a retraining order change sthis policy. Calling a lawer is also wise move. There are several ways to get this into court. There are also ways to get the police department into court. But your friend must get a lawyer.

I also hope she's carrying some sort of self-protection.

Restraining orders only work if the cops will give you one. They keep telling her she doesn't have grounds. They don't want to give her one...bottom line.

Mr Flibble
05-13-2010, 05:58 PM
Restraining orders only work if the cops will give you one. They keep telling her she doesn't have grounds. They don't want to give her one...bottom line.


I know nothing about US law, but if I were in that position, I'd go over the heads of the local police. Call the state chief of police and/or your local government representative(whatever each of these is called) calmly state the case, include evidence(witness statements etc), and state you intention to holler merry hell to the press about police corruption if you don't get a restraining order right now. (ETA: I am assuming that the local police aren't following the letter of your law here. If they are following the law, I would still talk to my government rep. Sometimes they can nudge people in the right direction.)

YMMV

EETA: Apparently, it's not the cops who issue the restraining order. So this no longer applies. Better lawyer required.

But going over people's heads when they aren't doing their job often works wonders.

Terie
05-13-2010, 06:02 PM
IANAL, but I'm fairly certain that police departments don't issue restraining orders....courts do. If your friend's lawyers are that flummoxed, she needs to find a qualified lawyer. Many cities and counties also have legal aid services she should explore.

veinglory
05-13-2010, 06:02 PM
A lawyer can do whatever you instruct them to within the lawyer, including getting any reasonable restraining order--IMHO they need to get a better lawyer.

kaitie
05-13-2010, 06:04 PM
I'm fairly certain a JUDGE grants a restraining order. It has nothing to do with cops. Once it's been granted the police are then required to enforce this.

I'm also pretty sure that threatening bodily harm is against the law. The way it sounds, you've got witnesses willing to say that he gave death threats at a SCHOOL? Her school security should be warned not to let this person on the grounds, but honestly, first of all she needs a lawyer. Get a lawyer, get a restraining order, and hell, if he ever showed up I'd call 911.

And I'd mention the fact that the cops aren't being cooperative to the lawyer as well. But seriously. Restraining order. Like, immediately.

Mr Flibble
05-13-2010, 06:06 PM
IANAL, but I've fairly certain that police departments don't issue restraining order....courts do. If your friend's lawyers are that flummoxed, she needs to find a qualified lawyer. Many cities and counties also have legal aid services she should explore.

I wasn't sure about that, but knowing nowt about US law...

If that is the case, yup, find a better lawyer.

Jamesaritchie
05-13-2010, 08:26 PM
I know nothing about US law, but if I were in that position, I'd go over the heads of the local police. Call the state chief of police and/or your local government representative(whatever each of these is called) calmly state the case, include evidence(witness statements etc), and state you intention to holler merry hell to the press about police corruption if you don't get a restraining order right now. (ETA: I am assuming that the local police aren't following the letter of your law here. If they are following the law, I would still talk to my government rep. Sometimes they can nudge people in the right direction.)

YMMV

A judge must listen to your case, and he decides whether a restraining order will be issued. You don't need a lawyer to get a restraining order, but it helps.

The police merely enforce the restraining order, should it be violated.

Mr Flibble
05-13-2010, 08:44 PM
As I said, I don't know US law so I assumed the OP's info was correct. *shrug* I have edited the post though.

Cyia
05-13-2010, 08:51 PM
INAL, but IMO:

The person and her witness should take themselves down to the closest network news station and tell them that the police are unwilling to intervene after a death threat was issued at [insert name of school]. Provide names of who they can contact at the police station (as in the exact individuals she spoke to who refused to help). If there are parents willing to help, each one should email your mayor and demand to know why such behavior is permitted on school grounds. Clog his/her inbox with complaints from potential voters. Do the same with your Congressman.

Stop keeping the noise local.

Soccer Mom
05-13-2010, 08:57 PM
This really isn't the place to solicit this sort of advice. I'm particularly uncomfortable with seeking legal advice on behalf of another person.

I'm locking this thread.

This person needs legal advice from a reputable attorney who practices in her state. She might try seeking assistance from her attorney general's office or from a state legislator.