A neighbor insults and threatens: where to turn if you are afraid for your life

Most often, personal hostility between neighbors ends in an ordinary household scandal. But there are often cases when a neighbor not only insults using obscene language, but begins to threaten with physical harm or damage to property. According to statistics, the lion's share of calls to the local police officer occurs due to scandals with neighbors.

But not every application will be accepted at the department, since it is difficult to prove a person’s intentions in such a situation. What to do if a neighbor insults and threatens, and where to go if the police refuse to protect us - we’ll talk about this below.

How is the corpus delicti determined if a neighbor makes threats?

Not every threat from a neighbor constitutes a crime. Here, law enforcement agencies will rely on Article 119 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. According to this regulation, only death threats or threats to cause serious harm to health will be taken into account.

From the words of the threat it should be clear that his intentions are real and can be carried out in the near future. The seriousness of a neighbor’s words can be determined by the following factors:

  • in the process of voicing a threat, a person tries to attack or break into the door of a house/apartment;
  • the offender displays a weapon or swings at the victim, stalks;
  • the neighbor has a clearly inadequate mental state;
  • a person behaves aggressively under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

For example, if neighbors have a dispute over the fact that one of them is doing noisy repair work or playing music loudly, and as a result of the conflict certain threats were simply made, then there is no point in contacting the police. The district police officer simply does not recognize the presence of a crime here.

When a neighbor directly expresses his intention to kill, demonstrates bladed weapons or firearms, tries to catch up or throws stones, then this indicates the reality of his intentions. Here you should call the police immediately. If threats from a neighbor are received in writing or by telephone, then they should be preserved (record the telephone conversation) and presented to the district police officer as evidence.

Where to complain

Let's move directly to complaints about threats. If you receive a death threat, you should contact the police. You can do this in one of two ways:

  • Call the department and ask the police to come to the crime scene. In this case, the police officer will come to you himself, and you will be able to draw up a report right at the scene of the incident;
  • Contact the police department and write a statement. This can be done either in the office, by contacting the department yourself, or by drawing up a statement of threats in advance and submitting it through a representative with a power of attorney.

Once the complaint is submitted to the police, it will be reviewed and the police will open a case. During the trial, you will need to do two things: prove that the threats are real and feasible (often this is not required at all) and prove the fact of the threats themselves (using various types of evidence, which we will discuss below).

If the police accept and successfully consider your application, an inspection will be carried out, the materials of which will be submitted to the court. Based on them, a case will be opened, during which the degree of guilt of the accused and the appropriate punishment will be determined.

What to do and where to go if a neighbor threatens you

If a neighbor threatens violence, you should contact the police and file a report against the attacker. A law enforcement officer is obliged to visit the offender and conduct a preventive conversation with him. In general, such a situation can be resolved in several stages.

Pre-trial dispute settlement

Not everyone knows that verbal threats can be classified as a criminal offense. If a neighbor behaves inappropriately, he should be informed that he is breaking the law and may be held accountable for his words. This is how you should proceed:

  1. The victim must warn the offender that he will contact the police if the threats do not stop.
  2. If possible, all conversations and confrontations should be recorded on a voice recorder or video camera.
  3. If threats come in written form, then a response letter should be sent warning that the victim will be forced to contact the police.

Any evidence of threats from a neighbor should be collected. If it was not possible to record the confrontation on camera, you can collect testimony from other neighbors or eyewitnesses.

Contacting the helpline

To receive qualified psychological help, the victim can contact:

  • to the all-Russian helpline (you can call number 8);
  • to the helpline from the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation.

First of all, the help of a psychologist will help you get rid of fear and concentrate on methods of protecting yourself. In addition, a recording of a call to the helpline can be used later as evidence in law enforcement agencies.

Collection of evidence

The following can be used as evidence:

  1. Video recording of a conflict, attack or attempted attack by a neighbor.
  2. Photos of any damage he caused (broken door handle, broken lock, threats written on walls or doors, etc.).
  3. Any audio evidence. This could be recordings of telephone conversations, threatening calls, or a recording of the conflict itself if it was not possible to turn on the smartphone’s camera.
  4. Testimony of those who witnessed the conflict or the moment of the attack.

If the threats take the form of real and constant bullying, causing the victim to experience insomnia and depression, then it is advisable to obtain a certificate and a doctor confirming this fact. It can also be used as additional evidence.

How to write a statement to the police

The application to the district police officer can be submitted in printed or handwritten form. The text of the appeal should indicate the following points:

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  1. The essence of the statement. The victim must state the situation, describe it step by step. You should also provide information about the neighbor who is threatening - his name, address, phone number.
  2. Goal of request. It is necessary to point out the harm that the neighbor's threats cause. For example, fears for your life and the lives of loved ones, fear, anxiety, depression.
  3. List of evidence. At the end of the application is a list of the evidence collected. Naturally, photos, videos, audio, certificates should be taken with you.

If the victim can provide as much information as possible about his abuser, this will greatly simplify the work of law enforcement agencies and speed up the proceedings. When applying, you must have your passport with you.

If the police officer refuses to record the appeal, then you should receive his written refusal. With this document, you can contact the prosecutor's office and appeal against the inaction of the police.

Conflict resolution in court

A victim of a neighbor's threats can personally go to court only if he has suffered damage and has evidence of the threats. The case will be heard in civil court. The claim must indicate:

  • amount of damage;
  • information about pre-trial settlement of the dispute;
  • plaintiff's claims;
  • evidence of the neighbor's guilt.

The statement of claim can be made in simple written form, but it is better to submit it on a special form. The case opens in district court. The state duty will be only 300 rubles.

If the police have opened a criminal case under Article 119 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, then it will be transferred to the court after confirmation of the indictment. In practice, proving a threat to kill is very difficult. It is difficult to record video or audio of a neighbor’s words, and the witnesses to the conflict are most often the relatives of the victim, whose testimony will not be accepted.

You should contact the police, and even more so the court, only if there is sufficiently strong evidence of what you did. You also need to understand that a neighbor can hire a good lawyer who will achieve the quick release of the culprit.

Nuances of the situation

If a neighbor threatens violence, behaves inappropriately and insults, then action must be taken. But it is necessary to take into account the specifics of the situation.

1Mental abnormalities in the aggressorThe situation when the aggressor is a mentally ill person occurs quite often in practice. Therefore, you need to report possible inappropriate behavior to the police department. You can only be sent for compulsory treatment by a court decision. And for this you will need the results of a medical examination.
2The aggressor is the employerThe owner of the apartment must be notified of the situation. If you refuse assistance, you must inform that the apartment is being rented out to the Federal Tax Service. If the employer behaves aggressively, contact the police.
3A child was the victim of an attackThe responsibility to protect the rights and interests of minor children rests with guardians. Therefore, parents must protect their child from attacks from a neighbor.

Regardless of the situation, remain calm. The use of physical force may lead to countermeasures from the aggressor.

If you are assaulted, he will be able to obtain a medical report and hold you accountable. Therefore, it is necessary to act within the framework of the law and with extreme caution.

Punishment for threat to life

Liability under Article 119 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation occurs only if the neighbor had a real intention to kill or cause serious harm to health. Its effect applies to citizens over 16 years of age. The culprit faces:

  • compulsory work for up to 480 hours;
  • arrest for a period of up to six months;
  • forced labor, restriction or imprisonment for up to two years.

If the threats were carried out on the basis of hatred of race, religion or political beliefs, then the crime acquires a qualifying characteristic. Accordingly, the punishment will be more severe:

  • forced labor for up to 5 years;
  • imprisonment for up to 5 years.

If the threat came from an official, then in addition to the term, he will be prohibited from holding a certain position and conducting activities for up to 3 years.

Consideration of the case in court

Sometimes things get so serious that you have to file a lawsuit against your neighbor. There can be many grounds for filing a claim, but most of them involve either injury to health or property, or moral injury. At the same time, any damage to a person’s emotional health can be considered moral harm – from severe irritation resulting in minor harm to health, up to causing psychological trauma to a person.

In order to go to court, you will need to file a statement of claim. It should include three parts:

  • Title. Contains court data (name, address), plaintiff data (your full name, address, contacts), defendant data (full name, address and neighbor’s contacts);
  • Information part. Contains information about the conflict that has arisen, a description of threats received or damage caused, a calculation of the amount of compensation (if necessary) and a list of requests to the court;
  • Conclusion. Contains a list of attached materials, the signature of the plaintiff and the date of filing the claim in court.

Sample claim to court.doc

After you write a statement, you will need to submit it to the court. If you require compensation for damages in an amount less than 50,000 rubles, then the claim is sent to the magistrate's court. If the amount of compensation is greater, go to the district. When filing a claim, you will also need to provide some case materials, as well as a receipt for payment of the state fee (300 rubles).

After the application is submitted, you will need to wait some time (about 5 days). After this, you will receive a response from the court, which will either indicate the reason for refusing to consider the case, or information about the start of the hearing. If the application is accepted, you will need to appear in court on the appointed day and take part in the consideration of the case. Upon completion, the court will either accept your side or reject the claim.

What to do if property damage occurs

If a neighbor not only threatened, but also damaged property (broke a door, hit or scratched a car), then to protect the rights of the victim, go to the district court. To do this, you need to file a claim for damages and send it to the court at the defendant’s place of residence.

To go to court, you must prepare the following documents:

  • lawsuit;
  • photo or video of damage;
  • act of the management company on inspection of the apartment if damage was caused to the property;
  • damage assessment (for example, a receipt after purchasing a new door);
  • if the damage is particularly large (for example, a neighbor set fire to an apartment), then an assessment report from an independent expert will also be required;
  • any other evidence of the neighbor’s guilt.

An appeal to the police should also be attached to the claim if the victim has already written one. During the trial, full compensation for damages should be sought. Sometimes it is the need to compensate for harm that influences the behavior of the offender.

You should also go to court if your neighbor’s threats involve human rights violations. For example, he seized a garage that belongs to the victim or part of his personal plot. If the case can be won, then it will be possible to refer to it when contacting the police, in the event that the neighbor begins to threaten again.

Sample application to a district police officer

The law does not establish a form for reporting violent neighbors to the district police officer. Therefore, the document can be drawn up in free form. The main thing is to comply with the norms of an official letter.

Therefore, the document must contain the following information:

  • information about the head of the police department at the applicant’s place of residence;
  • name of the police department;
  • information about the applicant;
  • document's name;
  • reasons for contacting;
  • facts of violation of rights (indicating dates);
  • evidence of violations;
  • request for action (to hold accountable);
  • date and signature.

Sample statement to a local police officer against a neighbor who is threatening violence

Important! The first rule of contacting the police should be the seriousness of your intentions. If you plan to withdraw your application later, you may not want to start.

If you withdraw your statement several times, the police officers will simply stop responding to your complaints.

What to do if you can’t hold your neighbor accountable

If you can’t collect evidence of threats, but you can no longer tolerate your neighbor’s absurd attitude, then you can try one of the following options:

  1. Lawyers recommend inviting a quarrelsome person and recording his conversation with a neighbor on a hidden camera. If they have a conflict, the video recording can be presented to the police, at least as indirect evidence.
  2. Try to reach a compromise with your scandalous neighbor - enter into a dialogue and explain to him that threats result in criminal liability.
  3. Talk to his relatives and friends, explain that the offender is behaving illegally and causes significant discomfort.

In practice, such conversations should be approached delicately so as not to provoke a storm of negative emotions in your address. If the neighbor’s threats are real, and the victim has reasons to fear for his life, then you need to try to obtain evidence of his illegal actions.

A neighbor caused damage. How to proceed?

Quite often, threats, in addition to causing moral harm, are accompanied by damage to property. Sometimes this may simply be due to a conflict that has arisen, and sometimes the damage is caused for the purpose of intimidation. It is worth considering that damage to property and threats are completely different offenses, although they occur together extremely often.

If your property has been damaged, you must do the following:

  • Contact law enforcement services: police or prosecutor's office. They will conduct an inspection and confirm the neighbor’s guilt if the case materials are sufficient;
  • Assess the damage. You will need either documents indicating the price of damaged property (for example, contracts or checks), or the results of an independent examination;
  • Compensate for damage. This can be done with the help of law enforcement agencies, but the most reliable option is to file a claim in court.

What is considered an insult?

No law contains an exact list of offensive epithets.

In particular, any saying that:

  • Degrades human dignity;
  • Insults him.

Obscene language and other obscene expressions associated with the assessment of personal qualities in a rude manner definitely fall under the category of insult. If difficulties arise with the interpretation of a particular word, you will have to order a linguistic examination, which costs quite a lot of money and the costs for it will subsequently be recovered from the “losing” side.

As a rule, the primary examination is carried out by experts from a justice institution on behalf of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. But if anyone does not agree with the conclusion, please pay your money.

How to collect evidence

In our article we have mentioned various case materials and evidence. Let's consider what can act as evidence in more detail. First of all, these are some documents. Suitable documents include statements previously written and submitted to the police and management company and responses to them. Printouts of threatening messages (both emails and SMS), as well as paper letters and notes, will also be very useful. If any damage was caused, then medical reports (if damage to health) and expert assessments of the damage caused (if a neighbor damaged property) will be very strong evidence.

The second type of evidence is various records on electronic media. First of all, these are video recordings in which a neighbor threatens you. Recording on a dictaphone will also help. Remember - you have every right to collect audio and video materials, but only if they do not relate to the personal data of your neighbor. That is, the information contained in the recording should not relate to his private life, but only to your conflict.

The last but not least important type of evidence is witness testimony. Anyone who saw or heard the threats can take part in the case and speak about what happened. The help of witnesses will also be useful in other cases, for example, when drawing up a character reference for a neighbor.

In general, there are no restrictions on materials, and you can transfer to law enforcement services everything that is directly related to the case. The main thing is to familiarize yourself in advance with the rules for transmitting information on electronic media, since they are different everywhere.

Problems with a neighbor

As a rule, a conflict with a neighbor does not arise overnight. Usually such misunderstandings accumulate over a period of time. In order not to take the situation to the extreme, it is necessary to try to solve the problem as soon as possible.

Neighbors who can cause you trouble fall into several categories:

  1. Drinkers or drug addicts;
  2. Lovers of loud music and choice swearing;
  3. Mentally ill citizens;
  4. People who have recently been released from prison.

In addition to these categories of not entirely prosperous citizens, there is another certain type of people for whom conflicts simply bring pleasure and emotional release. While the actions of the former are still somehow understandable, the latter can cause many unpleasant moments and poison the life of even the most patient person.

What to do and how to protect yourself from aggression and threats?

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