What would you do? - Gahanna Ohio homeowner stalked by ex-owner

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Thread: What would you do? - Gahanna Ohio homeowner stalked by ex-owner

  1. #1
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    What would you do? - Gahanna Ohio homeowner stalked by ex-owner

    A couple bought a forclosure, the previous owner just can't see that it isn't his house any more. The fellow has been certified a nut case, but has not been locked up. The owners are giving up and selling.
    What would you do?

    It's in Ohio, do not know if it is covered by the castle doctrine.

    FOXNews.com - Couple: Home's Ex-Owner Drove Us Out - Local News | News Articles | National News | US News

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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    I would sue him civilly,or sue the state if hes that incompetent he should be locked up or deported back to poland IMHO
    "Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country,"
    --Mayor Marion Barry, Washington , DC .

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    Senior Member Array Pete Zaria's Avatar
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    Screwed up situation for sure. In answer to your question, if I were in their shoes, my plan of action would be something like this:

    I'd file a restraining order and call the police every time he showed his face on my street.
    I'd videotape his every move whenever possible, and try to make it look as incriminating as possible.
    I'd get my neighbors to sign a letter saying that this man has been harassing them and petitioning my legal ownership of the property.
    I'd file harassment, trespassing, stalking, slander, etc... charges based on the evidence collected, the numerous police reports that would have been produced by my above-given advice, etc...

    However, I would not brandish a weapon or threaten him until no other option was left, or he was threatening the children, etc... Doing so would only make you look worse in court, or face criminal charges.

    Having said that, the first time this guy got physically violent, if I had the legal opportunity to turn his lights out, I'd probably take it.

    Hey, you asked for my two cents...

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    Distinguished Member Array Paymeister's Avatar
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    1) No help appears to be available from the "system";
    2) I can't legally do anything on my own that would be likely to work;
    3) I had family to worry about...

    I would bail and take the loss like he did. Unfortunate and unjust, but safer for wife and kids.

  6. #5
    Senior Member Array justherenow's Avatar
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    We just got the castle doctrine here on 9/8 of this year. I would stand my ground.

  7. #6
    Senior Member Array flagflyfish's Avatar
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    Thumbs down Our justice system at work

    Couple: Home's Ex-Owner Drove Us Out


    GAHANNA, Ohio — John and Jamie Petree couldn't believe their luck. The home they bought in this Columbus suburb was near family and quality schools. Its huge backyard promised years of afternoon fun for their 2-year-old daughter and about-to-be-born son.

    They spent about $25,000 on remodeling — a deck, fresh paint, new hot water tank.

    They planned more — but instead they installed a security system, including outdoor video cameras and door alarms.


    They accuse the previous owner, who had lost the house in a bank foreclosure, of trying to scare them away. Charges of menacing by stalking and other offenses involving two separate incidents were filed against Andrew Zukowski, then dropped after he was ruled mentally incompetent.

    Now the Petrees have moved away, ending their eight-year struggle.

    They and their neighbors say Zukowski went from door to door, handing out fliers and urging people to sign a petition to have "his" home returned.

    The Petrees say he also photographed visitors, wrote down license plate numbers and at one point blocked the driveway with his pickup truck, refusing to allow a friend to leave.
    Related


    "It never ended," said neighbor Ken Weimer. "You'd think he's gone, he's finally given up and then a month or two later he'd be back. And he'd just stop and stare at the house."

    Zukowski, 62, a native of Poland, says he drove by the home only once after the foreclosure and never threatened the Petrees or handed out fliers or petitions.

    He still hopes that someday he'll again walk through the front door.

    "I lost my house but maybe God will take different option and maybe somebody will evaluate this situation and change their mind about my good standing, my good reputation because I am not a violator," he said.

    Unhappy with the way the house was built, Zukowski had demanded that the county reassess its value for tax purposes. The Ohio Board of Tax Appeals eventually ruled that he wasn't exempt from property taxes, board records show.

    Then, with little savings and no job, Zukowski couldn't keep up with the $532 monthly mortgage payments, and the house sold at auction for $125,000.

    "They started the auction: $100,000 ... 105 ... 110 ... 120. I stand up and I say 'I am Andrew Zukowski. What are you doing here? This house has not been foreclosed because I have a pending appeal,"' he said.

    A few days after he was evicted in 2000, Zukowski was arrested on charges of criminal trespassing and felonious assault, accused of swinging a pipe at the investor who bought the house.

    Four charges of menacing by stalking were dropped when a judge found him mentally incompetent to stand trial.

    "Mr. Zukowski does have a persecutory mental disorder, delusional disorder," Dr. John Randall, a forensic psychiatrist, said in a 2001 hearing before the 10th Ohio District Court of Appeals. "Mr. Zukowski has repeatedly acted on delusions and beliefs in a way that have resulted in the fear and intimidation of others, particularly the current residents of the house."

    After the Petrees bought the house from the investor, Gahanna police warned them to watch for the former owner.

    That fall, John Petree noticed a truck slowly going by the house.

    "I thought 'You know what, that's a red and white pickup truck. I wonder if he's hanging around.' So I started walking toward the truck, and it took off," said John Petree, 41.

    Zukowski often parked where he had a clear line of sight through fenceless backyards to the back of the house, the couple said.

    In May 2003, Zukowski and his wife, Teresa, were at the Petrees' front door. He said they thought the house might be empty.

    "I was thinking that this house will be ours," said Zukowski, who now lives in another Columbus suburb. "I don't know. Maybe somebody wants to give back this house because they made a mistake."

    Jamie Petree pushed her panic button, setting off the home alarm, and called 911. A dozen police cars blocked the street.

    Zukowski was charged with menacing by stalking and resisting arrest. Those charges were dismissed, after three years, when an appeals court found that he hadn't been given a proper mental evaluation.

    A probate judge's refusal last year to order Zukowski either committed to a mental hospital or closely monitored — meaning he was no longer considered mentally incompetent — persuaded the Petrees to give up. They say they have lost more than $100,000, including lost income and a lower home value.

    "We're not letting our house go because we can't pay," John Petree said. "We're letting our house go because it's unsafe."

    In May, they moved into a nearby rental home.

    "It became challenging. We thought, 'He's not running us from our house,"' Petree said. "But over last summer, I just got mentally tired."

    I'm speechless
    "These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier
    and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the
    service of his country; but he that stands it now, deserves the
    love and thanks of man and woman."

    -- Thomas Paine (The American Crisis, No. 1, 19 December 1776)

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    As much as one might like to double tap this idiot, I would probably be thinking of family and friends and bail...it's just not worth it.

    Too bad this owner couldn't win the lottery and have the place demolished right after his move to a much nicer house...

    I'd move and remember...what goes around, comes around...and the Cosmos is just getting ready to ZAP this 'maroon'.
    The last Blood Moon Tetrad for this millennium starts in April 2014 and ends in September 2015...according to NASA.

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    I would do anything necessary to guard against physical threat. Were he to cross the line to violent felon, I'd treat it like any other similar situation. That said, the patent refusal of the "justice" system to take his stalking and other actions seriously would be hard to stop via any other means. You either find some other means, or you leave.
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    Senior Member Array flagflyfish's Avatar
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    I would do whatever is necessary to protect my home and family, that would NOT include moving out. I would install a fence around the property,(to keep the dog in) I would get a good camera with a telephoto lens to take pictures of him whenever he was within 100 yrds of my property. I would install the proper no trespassing signage, I would enlist the help of the neighbors (they probably don't want a crazy person living next to them) to watch for him and document his sightings. I would enlist the help of the media (the homeowner has already has done that), to pressure local law enforcement (the liberal judges) to act on what is a dangerous and reoccuring situation. to sum it all up, when I got done with him he would rue the day he left Poland!
    "These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier
    and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the
    service of his country; but he that stands it now, deserves the
    love and thanks of man and woman."

    -- Thomas Paine (The American Crisis, No. 1, 19 December 1776)

  11. #10
    Senior Member Array flagflyfish's Avatar
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    One thing I will be doing is calling the Mayor's office in the morning.

    City of Gahanna
    200 South Hamilton
    Gahanna, OH 43230

    (614) 342-4000
    (614) 342-4100 Fax

    Hours of Operation
    8:00 AM - 5:00 PM M-F
    "These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier
    and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the
    service of his country; but he that stands it now, deserves the
    love and thanks of man and woman."

    -- Thomas Paine (The American Crisis, No. 1, 19 December 1776)

  12. #11
    VIP Member Array TN_Mike's Avatar
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    I'll only say this, I have 3 friends who are arson investigators and all three have told me at different times that a grease fire in the kitchen can not be proved to be arson.

    I am not advocating anything, I'm just saying. It would serve the idiot who used to live there right.
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  13. #12
    VIP Member Array paramedic70002's Avatar
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    I heard someone call a radio show once, asking what could be done about a pesky fellow who wouldn't leave his dear father alone about some property case. The advice given was for the caller to explain to the bully that further action would result in a major butt whipping. In the event of further action, deliver said butt whipping.

    I always thought that was sound, if risky, advice.
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

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