So, today a neighbor threatened my family.

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by GrassGuerilla, Sep 5, 2013.

  1. GrassGuerilla

    GrassGuerilla LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,437

    Mods feel free to move this as you see fit:

    A little background. Ive been in the grass biz for well over a decade. I've done foreclosed properties for much of that time. I've been threatened, had equipment stolen etc. but all part of the learning curve. Honestly, the personal threats were really of little concern, I'm a big boy.

    Today, while cutting an empty lot for a broker, one of the neighbors came out and tried to intimidate me. Shouting that I had no business there. Truth be told the property seems to be in some sort of dispute. The neighbors claim to have maintained it for years. The out of state property owner only recently (April 2013) sent me out for an "initial estimate." After a couple months of delay, I was finally approved to do the initial several weeks back (end of July or early August.)

    Here's where it gets creepy. He starts threatening that he knows where I live, and how he was going to "**** me up". At this point I dialed 911. Apparently I gave them the wrong address. I said New Halls Ferry, when it should have been Old. Anyway I finished up, loaded up and called back 911 to find out wtf? Oops. Dispatcher offered to re-send the call to the address, I declined and went to the local precinct.

    Before I go any further, here's my primary issue. I want to know how he got my info. He knew who was on my vehicle title, who was listed as the "TOD". By he thought that meant The name Todd. I think this guy is a tow truck operator (as there is one in his driveway) and I'm assuming he most likely had a cop buddy run my plates. I'm considering hiring a private detective to find out who ran my plates through the system and gave out that info. To my knowledge that is not legal to do "just to harass someone".

    I'm likely done with these bank owned or foreclosure properties. This level of risk is simply unacceptable. The lack of local police to help find out who ran my plates has left me feeling all alone.

    In closing my very long post (sorry), I don't really think this guy means to follow up on his threat. I see it as an attempt to intimidate me into not doing the job. My concern, is to find out how this information was obtained, and punish anyone involved appropriately. I a cop gave this info up, I'd like to see them lose their badge.

    If providing information to an individual with the intention to intimidate them and threaten their family is acceptable, I'm done. I had a work order to cut some grass. This all seem way beyond the pail.

    I'm looking for advice on how to proceed. I feel like my local police, St. Louis county prosecutor have no desire to help.
     
  2. easy-lift guy

    easy-lift guy LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,376

    I believe your suspicions are correct about how information was secured about you. I believe you have laid out your case well, however finding the leaker of said info, seeing punishment being served may be harder.
    Start the interview process and be prepared to answer any all questions by your attorney representing your case. If you can find a attorney to handle your case on a contingency basis, that will keep your cost down other than any out of pocket expense as well as any emotional capital you have spent and will spend.
    easy-lift guy
     
  3. Patriot Services

    Patriot Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,254

    Go back and cut again. See what he does. Lots of a holes just like to blow hot air. Tow truck operators seem to consider themselves a branch of the law these days. If your being paid then continue to do the job. Let him talk himself into a jail cell.
     
  4. PK Mows

    PK Mows LawnSite Member
    Posts: 88

    With a tow truck in his drive and knowing your info, he's probably a repo operator and pays to have access to license plate info and other public searches. Using that sort of service in this manner would be a violation of his service agreement so complain to whatever agency oversees repo operators.

    If he did have a Police Officer run the tag for him, that would be a violation of State law and could cause the department to lose or have their access to the State CIC suspended. Officers lose their jobs over this violation. I'm a retired small town Police Chief and have had first-hand experience with Officers doing this. It's very easy to see who ran a tag, each Officer and Dispatcher has their own id number which is entered anytime the system is accessed. Very simple to back search and see who all has run your tag. In Tn, an Officer who does this and accepts payment has committed a felony, I would imagine Missouri is the same.
     
  5. Stars & Stripes Landscaping

    Stars & Stripes Landscaping LawnSite Member
    from CT
    Posts: 246

    Contact the local police department, I know up in my jurisdiction it's illegal to run anyones information no related to law enforcement purposes. The gentleman, as well as the officer that may have ran it can be charged criminally.
     
  6. YellowDogSVC

    YellowDogSVC LawnSite Gold Member
    from TX
    Posts: 3,759

    You have a case for having the man arrested for "terroristic threat" which, at least in Texas, is taken seriously. If a cop ran his plates, or anyone for that matter, there will be an electronic trail. It is possible that he got your tag info and went to one of those DMV sites that, for a fee, can get loads of information and got your information that way. I get a lot of unsolicited mail and phone calls and it's sometimes creepy how much information they have about my house, business, officers of the corporation, etc. I don't think getting tag info would be that much more difficult but, like you said, if a cop buddy ran it, that's a crime.

    Don't let him get away with making threats. Too many nuts out there that will act on it. If you had to defend yourself, someday, I'm guessing it would be better for you if this guy had been investigated for threatening you..

    It's sad that some P O C(rap) would threaten you over mowing a yard that needed it. I have been yelled at for clearing land when the neighbor didn't want "their" woods view disturbed but never threatened and hope that I'm not. Good luck!
     
  7. GrassGuerilla

    GrassGuerilla LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,437

    Thanks for the responses all. I've poked the hornets nest that is our local county gov. Spoke with an officer (he didn't file a report, as he didn't see a problem), called the duty Sargent (still waiting for a call back 6 hours later), sent an e-mail to the precinct captain outlining the issue, and initiated an internal affairs investigation into a DPPA section 18 violation (drivers privacy protection act).

    If that don't light a fire, I plan to visit the local FBI field office Monday to attempt to have the database searched to find out if an officer made an inquiry to a state or federal database illegally.

    Not sure what kind of attorney I may need to represent me, but I want somebody held accountable.
     
  8. TX Easymoney

    TX Easymoney LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,089

    Go get a lawyer and let him sort through it....or call local DA and ask how to proceed. ?.maybe internal investigation..ahh didn't read your post
     
  9. GrassGuerilla

    GrassGuerilla LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,437

    I contacted the prosecuting attorneys office. No joy. After explaining the situation, I was transferred to an Prosecutor. She listened to it all, then asks how did you reach ME? I told her, then asked whom I was speaking to? She WOULD NOT IDENTIFY herself. When pressed, she hung up on me.

    I'm now getting PISSED. Ironic that If I drive 7mph over the limit, there are plenty of cops to write tickets. Threaten my family and violate my federal Drivers privacy protection rights, and the cops could care less. **** police funding.
     
  10. Stars & Stripes Landscaping

    Stars & Stripes Landscaping LawnSite Member
    from CT
    Posts: 246

    Hey hey, we're not all bad guys out here.

    How is your local government handled as far as law enforcement, here it goes Local, State, Federal.... Is this the same there? If so maybe see a State Officer? If no luck there, what about your state rep? If no luck there, go to the news... they'll eat that **** up.
     

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