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What do I do when a neighbor keeps calling the police?

Imperial Beach, CA |
Filed under: Civil rights

Everytime I Have family to come over n we play music, my window will be close but still the police will be called.. Or watching tv the cops will come because they were called.. I couldn't even stand in front of my house at night and talk to someone. What can I do..

Attorney Answers 1


You have stated that your neighbor keeps calling the police; however, you have not indicated whether a complaint has been filed which requires your having to address the issue in court.

I am not licensed in California; however, neighborhood disputes are common everywhere, and most municipalities in most States have a way to deal with them. They are known as Community Disputes Resolution Committees (CDRC). They may be known under a different name in your State, but the overall concept is the same. CDRC is a form of mediation consisting of a panel of township citizens specially trained in mediation techniques. The parties appear before the panel, which then works with the group to develop an equitable solution. Typically, you cannot simply call the local police department and request that your problem be scheduled for CDRC. A complaint must be filed in Municipal Court for referral to CDRC by the judge. At the mediation, the mediation panel (consisting of 2 or 3 trained mediators) listens to both sides. The parties get an opportunity to get their complaints off their chests. Sometimes, the panel will ask one side or the other to step out of the room so that they can discuss some sticking points with the other party. If an agreement is ultimately reached, a consent form is signed by all parties and the Committee members, and the paperwork is given to the Court. If all parties agree to a resolution, the case is dismissed by the Court. If no resolution is agreed upon, the case will be referred back to the Court where it will be heard by the judge.

It is in everyone's best interests to try to resolve cases such as yours because no one ever "wins" in a neighborhood dispute. Both sides eventually lose. If the case must go to Court and the defendant is found "guilty", he is usually so resentful that he finds new "legal" ways to annoy his neighbor. Conversely, if he is found "not guilty", he usually takes advantage of the winning verdict and finds himself upsetting the complaining neighbor even more than before by continuing the same annoying behavior. I suggest that you contact your local police department to inquire if such a program exists where you live.

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