My question involves criminal law for the state of: Washington.
I have been having trouble with a neighbor for a couple of years now. The daughter is maybe 13-14 and her friend (I'll call Boy) is about the same age. The daughter's father is a sherrif deputy.
This started a couple yers ago with hang-up phone calls. I can trace one back to them as they goofed and forgot to block the caller ID. The kids also would ring the doorbell and then hide. I could never really catch them at this, but a couple of times the daughter would apologize for her friends doing that.
The kids play ball in their front yard and always overthrow the ball into my yard. Same with the back yard, which has a 6 foot chain-link fence.
Two Xmas's ago, I go up early Xmas morning to go to family breakfast. We had a horrible winter and tons of snow. I had 6 foot high snow berms. When I went outside to shovel the new snow, I found that someone had created massive tunnels through the snow berms and pushed a lot of old hard snow chunks onto my driveway. Footprints were to the neighbors house. I tried shoveling this heavy snow and had a lot of trouble. I saw that the neighbors were indeed home so went over to their house to ask them to please respect my property and stay out of my yard. I explained the issue with the snow on my driveway. The parents said their kids didn't do it. I said there were footprints. The dad (the sherrif deputy) went over to my house to check it out. I stayed at thier house and was talking to mom and 2 kids. I told them that this was not the first time I have had issues with the kids and then playfully I waggled my finger at the oldest daughter and said "you know what I mean." The mom attacked me, put both hands on my shoulders and pushed me up against the door while sreamming "f***ing bitch" in my face (in front of her 2 kids!). I told her 3 times to take her hands off me. When she finally did, I turned and walked out the door.
The dad did not believe me and said I was being melodramatic. He also did not believe the phone calls nor bell ringing incidents and wanted to know if I had proof. I erroneusly did not report the incident by the wife (my bad!).
Since then, things have gotten even worse. The kids continue to throw the ball into my yard. It often even hits the house. I have since put locks on the gates to the back yard as one day I came home and the gate was open and the dog was out.
A year ago I tried to chat with the kids to ask them again (for the bazillionth time) to not play in my yard. The Boy was quite rude so I gave up. A few days later, the dad left me a message to say I was never to talk to his kids again. I tried to contact him to tell him I never talk to the kids unless they are trespassing in my yard -- but could never catch him.
A few weeks later, their ball went in my back yard and while the dad was standing right there (in my yard), the daughter rattled the locked gate. I was sick so ignored the issue. The ball was later gone from my yard so I assume they climbed the fence to get it.
Two days ago, I was out painting a new shed in my back yard. The kids were in the front (and yup, the ball was constantly going into my yard). As soon as I went outside, they decided to play football in their back yard. They don't even try to keep it out of my yard. The daughter stood 2 feet from the fence trying to catch a football that of course when into my yard. I threw it back over the fence and told the kids "If it comes over here again, it's mine." I really feel as it the kids are doing this on purpose -- because they can.
Five minutes later, dad comes whipping outside and starts yelling at me about why would I take these little kids (yup, he said "little kids") football. He threatened to arrest me for theft. And then said he was going to get "an order" against me for talking to his kids. He would not listen to anything I tried to say, so I just brushed him off like a pesky fly and said "go away." And I went back to my painting.
Whew -- so here's my questions.
I feel threatened by the dad as he is law enforcement. He is trying to intimidate/bully me. I feel as if I have not done anything wrong at all.
I also am uneasy about other things that the kids could/would do. I work, so am not home all the time. Last year when school let out, several houses had their newpaper boxes pulled up and thrown a block away; hmm - the neighbor's was not. I'm fearful that this is escalating -- and the kids (and apparently the parents too) think they can get away with anything.
What can I do? I have told the kids a bazillion times to stay out of my yard. I have told the parent a couple of times too.
thank you for any advice!