1The Man Who Burned Down His Neighbor's House
Phillip Roger Bennett has no patience for those who let their grass grow too long. In fact, after getting into an argument with neighbor Marty Corbitt about his lawn, Bennett not only slapped Corbitt in the face, but burned down his house when he didn't immediately start mowing.
After the argument, Corbitt went inside to watch TV with his daughter Kylie when Bennett kicked down his door and told him he had five seconds to go outside. Alarmed, Corbitt called 911, and while he was on the phone, his neighbor returned with two gas cans in hand, which he poured all over the home before lighting it.
"Flames were everywhere. I ran back to my little girl's room, grabbed her, ran out the back door over to my neighbor's and watched the house burn," Corbitt recalled about the incident. While he and his daughter made it out safely, everything in their home was destroyed.
2The Man Who Hired a Hitman to Murder His Neighbors
Many people dislike their neighbors, but it takes a special kind of psycho to take things as far as Oregon's Jeffrey Wright Leonard did. Leonard was angered over a long-standing dispute stemming from a parking issue. After throwing dog feces and shining floodlights into the homes of his neighbors didn't get them to move, he then tried to run them off the road. When that didn't work, he opted to kill them by hiring an assassin to ram their vehicle off the highway. Fortunately, the hit man went to the police instead of going through with the murders.
This wasn't the first time Leonard had a problem with his neighbors. He met the would-be assassin while serving time in jail for violating a restraining order from another terrorized nearby resident.
Police arrested Leonard and charged him with solicitations for murder and conspiracy to commit murder. “We're convinced this man meant business, and if our source was not going to agree to kill for this guy, somebody else would have,” said Sgt. Scott McKee.
3The Man Who Was Legally Banned From His Own Home
David Constantine was such a bad neighbor that he was legally banned from returning to his home. He threatened them, cut down their hedges, built a barbed wire fence between the two homes and would bang on their walls at all hours of the night. He falsely accused his neighbors of hitting him with a frying pan and stabbing him in the chest, which resulted in an innocent man's arrest. Constantine's harassment was so bad that it eventually resulted in his being arrested for the attempted murder of Stefan and Lucy Ward.
Constantine was offered the opportunity to stay out of prison as long as he sold his house within six months and did not visit the property without a chaperone. However, when no one would buy the house, the court lifted the ban. The Wards were terrified of their tormenter's return, but the judge stood firm, saying if Constantine communicated with them or bothered them in any way, he would be sent to prison.
4The Man Who Took His Neighbors Out On Their Dime
You wouldn't normally call someone a bad neighbor for treating you to an expensive pro-football game. Imagine, however, looking over your credit card statement at the end of the month only to discover that you were the one who paid for the experience since your neighbor had stolen your credit card.
That's what happened to Bill and Melissa Callahan, who thought it was awfully generous of Anthony James David to take them to a Tampa Bay Buccaneers game. "As it turned out, looking at our credit card statement, we had financed the entire day," Bill Callahan said.
By the time the Callahans recognized David had stolen their identity, he had already racked up $2,969.38 worth of charges. David was arrested on ten counts of theft of personal identification information, fraudulent use of a credit card, grand theft and dealing in stolen property.
This wasn't the first time David was arrested for fraud. Previous charges brought against him not only included identity theft and using a stolen credit card, but also pretending to be a doctor and practicing medicine without a license.
5The Neighbor Who Built His Own 24-Hour Racetrack
Most lottery winners want to change their lifestyle for the better, but some people use the cash to bring their lifestyle into upscale neighborhoods. One such person, Michael Carroll, spent a portion of his $15 million winnings on a beautiful five-bedroom home in a swanky neighborhood of Norfolk. He then proceeded to turn the property into a 24-hour racetrack for beat up old cars. As if the dust and noise weren't bad enough, he also insisted on lighting up fireworks and distress flares in the middle of the night. At one point, the fire brigade had to be called in to put out a blaze that broke out when a car and minibus crashed, sending thick clouds of smoke over the whole neighborhood.
Most of his neighbors shut their windows and doors to escape the dust and noise, but at least one family moved to escape the riotous atmosphere. Police were called 11 times in three months, but there was little they could do to stop Carroll, who has several criminal convictions on his record. He simply wasn't breaking any laws by turning his property into a race track.
There's an upside to this story though, Carroll's lavish lifestyle didn't last long. He is now back to living his former middle-class existence. He works at a cookie factory after spending all of his lotto winnings on racecars, drugs and women.
6The Neighbor Who Wrote A Letter Stating A Handicapped Child Should Be Euthanized
Parenting a handicapped child is never easy, but it's a whole lot harder when you have a monstrous neighbor who sends you a letter stating that you should "do the right thing and move or euthanize him (the child)." The hateful letter (pictured above) stated that they boy made "dreadful" noise when he played outside and that he "is a nuisance to everyone and will always be that way."
Karla Begley, the mother of the autistic boy mentioned in the letter, couldn't help but cry when she read it. "The more you go on, the worse it gets," Begley said, "Who says that about a child?"
The missive purported to express the feelings of everyone in the neighborhood, but the area's residents rallied around Karla and her son Max when they heard about it.
7The Woman Who Drove Three Different Neighbors to Depression
Arguments about plant roots and pruning are pretty common among neighbors, but few people are willing to take things as far as Jeanne Wilding. She was willing to do whatever it took to win a fight. Her tactics included dumping oil, dead animals, and broken glass on her neighbor's driveway as well as turning CCTV cameras directly toward her neighbor's houses. She also waited until the middle of the night to crank up music with lyrics about rape and murder. She didn't stop there either. Wilding was said to have turned high-powered floodlights into neighbor's homes and to have damaged the cars of other residents.
Wilding actions were so over the top, her neighbors had to seek treatment for depression. After 257 complaints from 15 local people and organizations, 30 arrests and a short stint in jail, a court banned Wilding from playing music above 30 decibels after 7pm and installing any lights or CCTV cameras that cover any area outside her own home and garden. She was also ordered to pay $115,000 in court fees.
8The Man With A Noose and Confederate Flag In His Front Yard
When most people see a noose and Confederate flags, they tend to think of the intimidation tactics of the Ku Klux Klan. Robert Tomanovich claims he put a noose in his tree to honor a friend who hung himself. He went on to explain the Confederate flag was up merely to celebrate his southern heritage. After neighbors had complained, Tomanovich added a second noose and flag at another nearby property he owned.
"150 years after Abraham Lincoln's death, we are still witnessing this kind of atrocity...A hangman's noose and a Confederate flag?” resident Mary Greer said.
Despite locals planning a boycott of Tomanovich's business, he and his wife refused to apologize. His wife said in support of her husband, “there's no crime in hanging a noose.”
9The World's Crappiest Neighbor
Many people say they have crappy neighbors, but it's hard to find any crappier than Paula Bolli who dumped 40 cubic yards of fresh horse poop in her yard solely to get even with her neighbors. Homeowners Gus and Lucille Midura have had problems with Bolli for almost 25 years, but they still didn't expect two dump trucks to unload horse manure next door, which then attracted flies and rats to their property.
The manure wasn't being used as fertilizer since she put so much down that she couldn't even access the soil. "She's using fertilizer as dirt, and no one knows if it's legal," said Midura, who said a city representative looked into the matter but couldn't say whether any laws are being violated. "It's sickening," said an unnamed neighbor, "all our windows have to stay closed and the AC stays on. The air smells like rotten fish."
10The Man Who Built "The Great Wall of Fleetwood"
Dennis and Sandra Hawes wanted the chance to enjoy watching the seaside near their home, so they followed all the city's planning laws to build a terrace on the kitchen roof. Unfortunately, their neighbor, Charles Hart, disliked the fact that the terrace overlooked his garden, so he built what quickly became known as Great Wall of Fleetwood. The 16' high fence between the properties not only blocked the Hawes' view, but attracted the attention of the Wyre Borough Council. The council threatened to take Hart to court if he didn't take part of the wall down since he only got permission to build a 16' wall but stretched it to extend almost 28 feet.
While Hart was forced to pull down the portion of the wall that exceeded planning permissions; he was permitted to leave the rest of it up. He succeeded in blocking a good portion of his neighbor's view.
11The Woman Who Marred A $23 Million Home Out of Spite
When the owner of a $23 million home in one of London's most expensive areas lost a planning dispute, she protested by painting ugly red stripes across her residence. The owner, property developer Zipporah Lisle-Mainwaring, wanted to demolish her home and change it into a five-story building with a mega-basement that would house an underground swimming pool and movie theater.
Neighbors protested the conversion, believing the construction could lead to structural problems in properties surrounding the home. While their complaints are well-founded, there is little that could be done to force her to change the garish decor since she did not violate any laws.