What may have started as a dispute between neighbors in Indianapolis led to the arrest of a 67-year-old woman. Among other things, the woman is accused of striking one of her neighbors with a ‘No Trespassing’ sign the neighbor had posted in her yard. The woman denies striking her neighbor with the sign. However, she did allegedly admit to pulling the sign up and tossing it down. She faces charges of criminal mischief, trespassing and, perhaps most seriously, battery.
The woman explained her actions as a response to the neighbors playing their music too loud. Police indicated that the woman had been told not to be on her neighbors’ property on at least one previous occasion. Reportedly, her anger with this neighbor stems from a dispute over her property line. Previous reports indicated that the woman had used racially-charged epithets and threatened the neighbors. Others said she had a tendency to target neighbors who were ethnic minorities both through threats and by making phone calls to drug enforcement officers and child welfare workers in an effort to get neighbors she found offensive to move.
While living with neighbors can be frustrating, it is important for Indianapolis residents to keep their cool. Being a bad neighbor or even getting upset is not considered a criminal act, but a neighbor who is angry can with relative ease cross the line and, although otherwise a decent person, wind up facing some serious criminal allegations.
For those who have found themselves facing criminal charges, legal options may be available. One should not let one heated exchange or spur of the minute action dictate how they must spend the rest of their life. These options can include exercising one’s right to tell his or her story at a trial, and they also may entail negotiating a reasonable deal with the Marion County prosecutor.