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Violent neighbor dispute results in $500,000 award

| Feb 9, 2019 | Neighbor Disputes |

Many people in Washington State have lived near a neighbor that may not have been their favorite for whatever reason at least once in their lives. Fortunately, people often find ways of dealing with difficult neighbors or accepting different opinions and styles so they can maintain peace in their neighborhoods and their homes. In some situations, however, this is not able to happen. An unfortunate example of this can be seen in the case of a prominent U.S. Senator who was actually physically attacked by his neighbor last year.

The Daily Beast indicates that the Senator and his neighbor had been at odds with each other over the Senator’s compost process and over some grass clippings. It is not known exactly what about these two things the neighbors disagreed on. One day, the Senator was dismounting his riding lawnmower when the neighbor attacked him, leaving him with broken ribs. No details as to the condition of the neighbor are known.

A lawsuit was filed in the matter and a jury recently awarded the Senator $375,000 in punitive damages and another $200,000 in compensatory damages. It is expected that the neighbor will appeal the decision but the timing of that appeal is not determined yet.

Situations like this illustrate the importance of taking action to protect one’s rights when a neighbor dispute turns ugly. People in Washington State might want to consult with a lawyer when they have ongoing problems with their neighbors so that they can either prevent a serious problem or be prepared to respond to one that develops.