Concerned Neighbor writes:
"I would like to know what can be done about neighbors that constantly have parties and loud music constantly. There is underaged drinking, lots of different people coming and going (I'm thinking drugs too), They seem to spend most of the time hanging out under their carport, with constant loud music, fighting, bad language, drinking , also underaged drinking, kids every age seem to hang out there constantly, if we could move I would but like most people our house isn't worth much right now. Plus I have kids one with a disability who get scared from the constant arguing and parties? What can we do? plus I know they are known well to police, and I would be afraid of the reataliation if they knew we were to report them for anything? PLEASE HELP!"
I can understand how frustrating this would be and how this negatively impacts your quality of life. What can be done? Well, the answer is, "a lot, but not without your help." The police have a number of laws and ordinances at our disposal to deal with nuisances like this- noise ordinance, parking and other code enforcement actions, Florida statutes against underage drinking, open house parties, disorderly conduct, and narcotics. Our quiver has quite a few arrows in it.
In order for us to apply these tools, we have to know when the offenses are taking place. So that means that either the officer has to happen upon the problem by chance, or there has to be a call for service to which an officer is dispatched. Given the size of the city, hoping an officer finds the problem on their own will likely lead to disappointment and continued frustration.
Our suggestion is to call the police and request an officer check out the problem. When you speak to the Call Taker, you can let them know that you would like to remain anonymous and specify that you do not want the officer to come to your home. We understand that you do not want to be the subject of retaliation. You can call us at (239) 574-3223 or 9-11.
Chances are good that this will not be a "one and done" situation, where the police come out once and you never have a problem again. While you may have been suffering in silence for months with this ongoing problem, if you have never called the police, then there is no record of it in our computers. If the officers go out and don't see anything overtly criminal or dangerous on their first visit, then likely a warning is all that will be issued (assuming that they see anything at all). For this problem to be properly documented and addressed, you will have to notify the police each time you witness the offense. Eventually, responding officers will see the "call history" in the computer system and will know that warnings are not the appropriate action to take.
The solution to this problem will require patience and persistence on your part. There is no guarantee that each time you call an officer will see an arrestable or citable violation. Without an independent 3rd party witness, the officer will have to observe the violation personally before taking any action. Stick with it. Give us every opportunity to see what you are seeing and do what we can do to make your neighborhood a more pleasant place to live. In the long run, your persistence will pay off and eventually the officers responding will witness something for which they can take action, or the nuisance neighbors will get tired of the police coming to their house and change their behavior...or at a minimum, take it inside.
If you have a question, please submit it. Click on the link below to "Ask CCPD."