Sued by neighbor for damages caused by incense

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agree with Sara keep a diary of everything that's happening.

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Sarabyrd

No, we don't have witnesses, but we can get the police reports. Our other neighbors tell us he has bothered them in the past as well.

 

When I spoke with our insurance agent, they had me talk to their German legal experts and the response I got was "I have never heard of anything like this", "He cannot do that".

 

But, would any attorney take a case like this if they thought it would go no where?

 

I really appreciate your supportive words. I am tracking down an attorney that specializes in this and like you, think that suing him for harassment is the right response.

 

still want to move (the house is beautiful and a lovely location, but how long can I live not being able to sleep or step outside of my own home?)

 

thanks again

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Westvan

The landlord tried to talk to him about this, but the neighbor would not even utter a syllable.

 

Moonboot, I have one. I keep notes about everything.

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What did the police tell you when they came? Did they tell you that it is against the law to burn incense or light candles?

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The police who came by although there was no cause for the neighbor from hell to call them are good witnesses to support you. Ask the precint for their names.

 

It would be worth while asking the police if the neighbor calls about other "disturbances" as well so you can cement his reputation as a crank.

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LeonG

No, the police tell me it is not against the law, but there is a law that states a person has the right to enjoy their own home without excessive impact from others.

 

"The German civil code states that a home-owner should enjoy his property in such a way as not to have any excessive deleterious effects on the neighbors."

 

Pretty vague.

 

The police tell me they always have to respond to the call, but they cannot charge me. At one point the wife (her name was on the document) tried to have criminal charges put against me, but the states attorney said it was a matter to be settled privately.

 

Again, I don't have any clear answers on if this would actually show up in court and be entertained as a valid complaint by a judge.

 

It really gets freaky to always see a police car in front of my house.

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But, would any attorney take a case like this if they thought it would go no where?

 

Of course they would, dealing with nutcases who make groundless claims is their bread & butter.

 

As sarabyrd says you not let yourself be intimidated by such an idiot and you should attack him back. There are a good number of wackos here who get a thrill from bullying people who are percieved to be weaker than them, foreigners being a good example of a typical target. It's not usually violent threats but the more typical German passive-aggressive sort - another sad side effect of every idiot having legal insurance, and you must stand your ground.

 

You will probably find that a couple of lawyers' letters and some well founded legal threats will force him back into his cave - his case is clearly groundless and I'm surprised the police keep coming to you, usually they realise who the nutters are and stop. When they come to you what do they say to you? Burning candles and incense isn't a crime, neither is smoking in your flat and opening a window.

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Sarabyrd

I agree with you. After the other neighbors told us that he had called the police on them for too much noise, I told the police this. They seemed surprised that he had called the police on others.

 

I want to go speak with the police and get the reports, but when I call to make an appointment they hang up on me.

 

I have an appointment with the base legal office next week and maybe a german speaking attorney can get some answers, but she was not very successful the last time I was in her office. That time she had to talk to three officers before she got a supervisor and then he hung up on her also.

 

I wish I could find out how many times he has called the police over all the years he has lived there; I have a suspicion it is quite a few.

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well if he and his wife are chain smokers how can likely minimal smoke from the incense be proven to have caused the respiratory failure?

 

try to remain calm and rational it does sound like the police may be getting fed up of his calls though they have to follow procedure and contact you.

 

I think the mediation is a good step, you have documented all the incidents, you can present your side of the argument.

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I wish I could find out how many times he has called the police over all the years he has lived there; I have a suspicion it is quite a few.

 

Invite your other neighbors over for Kaffee and Kuchen, be all friendly and solicitous about their welfare and curious about the neighborhood. In other words, pump them for information.

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I wonder if smoke from burning anger is a cause for calling the police. Ich koche vor Wut just reading the first post and echo what Sara said.

 

If you need to let off steam - f-words allowed - you can go over here.

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HellesAngel

When the police come, they just tell me has complained.

 

My husband is normally the one that talks to them, but I did not want him getting continually upset so I started answering the door. I reply to their comments quietly and they leave soon. When my husband talks to them, they are often there for 20 minute or more. But that is because he speaks German quite well and will query them on their thoughts.

 

I just say, ok, he complained, I got it. Now what? The reply is nothing more. I take their names, thank them for their service and apologize for wasting their time. They are always polite and quiet. No agression.

 

We even showed them the letter saying it was a private not a criminal matter, they just shrugged.

 

One time, I was in the basement, had the patio doors open, and did not realize it was the police. It was the first time the doorbell had ever rung, and I was trying to figure out where the noise was coming from and what it was. When I walked back upstairs, there were two police in my living room. That really freaked me out.

 

Now, when they come, the neighbor normally will watch the proceedings. This is one of the reasons I asked my husband to not answer the door any more; I think it was feeding the perversion that gets this guy going. If I answer the door, he goes away. Probably because I don't get upset and am really nice.

 

Dunno, I am still baffled as to what the guy gets out of this; people do things for what it gives them in return and I don't understand agression or being mean.

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Dunno, I am still baffled as to what the guy gets out of this; people do things for what it gives them in return and I don't understand agression or being mean.

Would "to be a cunt" be sufficient clarification of your bafflement?

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Oh definitely sue him back. And then buy a ventilator, set it in his general direction and cook a good curry.

 

And maybe think of getting another lawyer. The one you have doesn't sound very competent, if the police feel they can just hang up on her.

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Sarabyrd

we were recently invited over to a birthday dinner. The neighbors on the other side are quite special. Both are PhDs and published. They had lots of other neighbors and friends over and all of the same caliber. Terrific people. We asked them about this and what we got was one reported incident and the advice to avoid them. Everyone in the neighborhood avoids this guy. He is a handyman by trade and thus reliant on others for jobs. He has done work for one neighbor we know of, but the ones we have met will have nothing to do with him.

 

We have tried to be nice to all our neighbors; wine at Christmas, offers of help, hellos coming and going, but this guy and his wife take the wine and walk away. No thank you, no nothing in return.

 

When we first moved in, I hung up my windchimes. He climbed our fence, twice, and took them down. So now, I hang them up, set the timer and take them down at 2200 (10pm) for quiet hours. We also close all our windows and turn the TV off or way down at the same time.

 

I am tempted to turn into a b*tch, but that really is not me. I could burn onions and garlic 24x7 but that is not nice. I could put up 20 windchimes and take them down each night. We are looking at buying a bike, and my husband is talking about the pipes on it. But, I don't want to upset anyone.

 

I did put up my father's funeral flag (we are a military family). Not my style and normally I would try harder to fit in (not show off that we are Americans), but I had to do something.

 

I am so frustrated.

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