A Gainesville Police Department officer responded to a complaint that an individual was having problems with his neighbor. The victim stated that the suspect had been harassing him for a period of months and the victim was concerned for his safety. The victim claimed the suspect would sit outside his home waiting for the victim to come outside. When the victim went outside the suspect would yell obscenities at him, break boards, and throw items around the yard towards the fence between the two properties.
The victim also stated that as he was walking into a supermarket, he felt somebody brush against him from behind. When the victim turned around he saw the suspect, who was on the phone. The suspect told the person over the phone that the victim was “sick and will die soon.” The suspect also told the person on the phone that he watches the victim’s home all the time. The suspect has a history of aggressive behavior towards neighbors and a criminal background related to interactions with other neighbors.
The suspect was arrested and subsequently retained Meldon Law. We filed a motion to dismiss, claiming that the state did not establish all of the required elements of the crime, and that the state failed to demonstrate the repeated nature of behavior. The first part of this motion was granted, which reduced the crime from a felony to a misdemeanor. The defendant pled no contest to the reduced charges against him and was able to avoid serving any jail time, receiving one year of probation instead.