Our clients, a young couple in their twenties, owned a condominium in Lomita above a man who filed a restraining order against our clients.
Synopsis: Lomita, Torrance judge grants our clients’ restraining order, denies neighbor’s reciprocal order.
The downstairs neighbor was unemployed and very sensitive to any noise from above. When he would hear any noise, he would yell in a rage at the top of his lungs and poke a broom handle at the ceiling separating his unit from our clients’ unit. Our clients did their best to decrease noise to a minimum by always taking off their shoes before entering their condominium, putting down extra rugs and even using earphones to listen to the television.
Nothing seemed to appease the downstairs neighbor and the conflict expanded to the common parking area, where the six foot, five inch downstairs neighbor would follow our clients out to their cars to stare at them as they left. In one confrontation, the tall neighbor forced our shorter client into the bushes as they passed each other on a common walkway.
Our clients were at the point of seeking their own restraining order against their neighbor when the neighbor beat them to the courthouse. Our clients then came to Greg Hill & Associates for help.
Greg Hill interviewed the clients and then the former landlord of the downstairs neighbor, who told us she had evicted the tall man due to a similar pattern. When she regained possession of the unit, she found the ceiling full of holes from a broom handle. Greg Hill gathered a declaration from this former landlord. He then prepared a reciprocal petition for a restraining order against the violent neighbor and a ten page brief in opposition to the request for a restraining order sought by the neighbor downstairs.
Included in the brief were declarations from each of our clients about their efforts to minimize the noise and luckily, postings that our client discovered from the downstairs neighbor who used his real name to seek information in chat rooms about how to harass a neighbor to force a move. In the posting, the tall neighbor seemed obsessed with noise and made racial comments.
At the hearing on the restraining orders sought by the downstairs neighbor against our clients and by our clients against the downstairs neighbor, the judge focused all his questioning on the downstairs neighbor. The judge had read our brief.
The downstairs neighbor, however, was not intimidated. He began lying of events that never occurred and which should have, if true, been mentioned in his petition for a restraining order. The judge sensed that the tall man was lying and told him so. He then proceeded to lecture the man about anger management classes and recommending he no longer live with any common walls to neighbors.
In denying the tall man’s request for a restraining order and granting our clients’ petition for a permanent restraining order, the judge ordered the tall man to vacate his unit within 60 days and thereafter stay a minimum of 100 feet away from each of our clients for three years. He also had our office notice the Lomita Sheriffs immediately of the order to ensure the tall man stopped all harassment and stalking forthwith. Our clients could not have been happier.
For more information about the issues in this case summary, click on the following articles:
- What Should I Wear and Bring to Court?
- What Punishment Do I Face for Violating a Restraining Order?
- Ten Year Restraining Order Proper for Mother Who Stalks Husband and Scares Daughter
Watch our video about restraining orders by clicking here