Our Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyers know that disputes between neighbors are expected. What is out of the ordinary, however, is when one neighbor hurls dog poop at another neighbor in the midst of one such dispute.
This past week, a Boca Raton woman was arrested for throwing dog feces at her neighbor during an argument over the dog’s preferred location for defecation.
Apparently, the woman had enough of her neighbor’s dog relieving himself on her lawn. However, the manner in which she acted on her outraged landed her in jail and charged with assault on an elderly person.
Let’s first address the obvious: throwing dog feces (or any type of feces for that matter) is wrong. Not only is it illegal (as it can be construed as a form of assault, as it was in this case), but it is disrespectful and will only serve to escalate an obviously already tense situation. That said, our Boca Raton criminal defense lawyers know that you’d be extremely hard pressed to find anyone who would be OK with a neighbor’s dog continually defecating on their property despite multiple requests for the neighbor to prevent their dog from doing so.
According to the Sun-Sentinel, the 57-year-old woman who threw the feces witnessed her neighbor walking her dog on Wednesday afternoon, when the neighbor stood there and let her dog defecate on the woman’s property. At this point, the woman walked out of her house to confront her neighbor about the incident. During the altercation, the neighbor apparently told the woman that she would have cleaned up the poop were it not for the woman screaming and, if she continued to scream, she could just clean up the poop herself.
Given what happened, it seems that the neighbor’s recommendation that the woman should pick up the poop herself might have been a mistake.
The woman did as she was told; she used a plastic bag to scoop up her neighbor’s dog poop off the lawn. However, according to the police report, after picking it up, she followed her neighbor down the street, throwing the dog feces at her and smearing it on her face and arms. (The woman, who now faces criminal charges, disagrees, claiming that she “threw” the poop in the general direction of the woman but never hit her with it. In fact, our Boca Raton criminal defense lawyers at the Law Offices of Leifert & Leifert understand that the woman believes that her neighbor intentionally smeared the feces on herself in an effort to frame the woman.)
Now, the woman has been charged with assault on an elderly person. Our Boca Raton criminal defense lawyers know that according to Florida law, an assault is an intentional, unlawful threat by word or act to do violence to the person of another, coupled with an apparent ability to do so, and doing some act which creates a well-founded fear in such other person that such violence is imminent. However, Florida law also states that if someone is charged with assault upon someone 65 years of age or older, regardless of whether they knew the age of the victim, that assault shall be upgraded from a misdemeanor of the second degree to a misdemeanor of the first degree, which carries a possible sentence of up to $1,000 in fines and/or 1 year in prison.
If you have any questions about this unusual case, or if you’ve been charged with a crime in Palm Beach, Broward or Miami-Dade County, please contact our skilled criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Leifert & Leifert by calling 1-888-5-DEFEND (1-888-533-3363) to schedule a free consultation. We look forward to assisting you!