Shady Convict Has Become a Menace

by Emma F
(Atlanta )

Visitor Question: A 40 year old convicted felon moved in with an elderly widow a few months ago, and since his arrival, lots of shady events have happened.

The widow financially supports this man. She bought him a motorcycle and lets him drive her car despite not having a valid drivers license. He smokes weed and sells it to his friends from her garage. He removes tree limbs at 10pm and grabs them through the neighborhood. He used his drone to look in upstairs bedroom windows to get glimpses of women. He sends vulgar texts to single moms. He verbally harasses other homeowners at the community pool.

This widow was always friendly and would stop to chat. Since this guy has moved in, she barely says two words to people, is withdrawn and quiet.

This is a twofold question. How do we get rid of this felon and protect the widow?

Editors Reply: If possible, try to have a private conversation with the widow, aiming to find out what this guy is using as leverage with her. Is he a relative, is he blackmailing her, or does she need companionship? Express frankly your concerns about how his behavior is impacting the neighborhood, trying not to just sound judgmental about a lifestyle you don't share. See is she perceives she is in trouble.

If she needs to find the backbone or courage to evict him, try to enlist help of a social service agency or possibly the police.

Speaking of police, some of his behaviors seem worth reporting to the police. They may think they have more important things to deal with, but it's worth a try. We don't attempt to keep up with the changing marijuana law landscape, for instance, but his dealing may be illegal where you are.

Sending lewd texts and using your drone to capture photos of women in their bedrooms may be a tougher sell with law enforcement, but again, it's worth a look.

As for driving without a license, if there is a regular time of day this person leaves for work or recreation, this could be another vital piece of information for a sympathetic police officer.

You mention this person is a convicted felon. Find out if he is on parole or probation, and if so, attempt to report information to the appropriate officer. Again the police department may be the fastest way to get a referral to the appropriate offices is you haven't dealt with them before.

If the widow could be considered a senior citizen, contact local senior services organizations, preferably those connected with an area agency on agency or a local government, to find out if they can suggest a possible way to intervene on her behalf.

Unfortunately, we don't think there is a single simple solution to this situation, but we can only urge that you report each and every instance of inappropriate behavior to law enforcement, probation officers, code enforcement, or senior advocates as appropriate.

One more piece of advice is that we suggest that you find some others who feel the same way you do about this situation, so you can provide moral support to each other and divide the work of making contacts a bit. These situations are never any fun, but having some like-minded allies makes it feel a little easier.

Comments for Shady Convict Has Become a Menace

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Elder Abuse
by: Anonymous

What is described is called elder abuse and needs to be reported to the police. A call to 911 would get you to the proper authorities.

Editors Comment: Yes, we agree with this approach and should have mentioned it as an option.

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