October 19, 2021

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Nightmare neighbour caught trying to sabotage man’s doorbell camera after claiming it overlooks his home in furious row

A NIGHTMARE neighbour keeps trying to sabotage his next door’s Ring doorbell after claiming it overlooks his home in an explosive neighbourhood row.

Victoria Riscinskis, 39, installed the smart security gadget to keep tabs on the welfare of her vulnerable uncle, 61, who lives alone.

Neighbour Stephen Grove, 56, has been damaging the Ring camera on his next door's property

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Neighbour Stephen Grove, 56, has been damaging the Ring camera on his next door’s propertyCredit: SnapperSK
Victoria Riscinskis, 39, installed CCTV at the home of her vulnerable uncle

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Victoria Riscinskis, 39, installed CCTV at the home of her vulnerable uncleCredit: SnapperSK

But the doorbell has triggered a ding-dong with neighbour Stephen Grove, 56, who claims it overlooks his home and has launched a campaign against the camera.

Grove has tried to damage the bell at least three times this year – but his only success is being picked up in crystal-clear definition.

And his antics led to him being hauled to court and pleading guilty to criminal damage when CCTV showed him snipping its wires with pliers.

On another occasion, Grove was seen taking a hammer to another camera at the home – and last month was filmed appearing to deface the Ring’s lens with a marker pen.

And in one bizarre clip, he is nearly flattened by the door after allegedly removing the hinges.

‘PUSHING US TO THE BRINK’

And he confessed to the Sun Online his attempts had been “pathetic” but argued he felt like a prisoner in his own home over the camera.

But Victoria, whose uncle has learning difficulties and whom Sun Online is not naming, argued she needed the camera to make sure her relative was safe.

She said: “Last year he fell and was alone for 45 minutes. So the camera is really important so we can check on his welfare.

“The last thing anyone wants is to argue with their neighbour but he is pushing us to the brink.

“I’ve honestly had enough.”

West Midlands Police said they had taken action but were aware the issues were “continuing” in the row.

The bell was fixed to a wall on a shared entrance to the two adjoining bungalows in Birmingham, West Mids, in January after reports from carers that they were being harassed.

In March, the camera picked him up using pliers to cut wires – which led to him admitting criminal damage before magistrates last month.

Yet, just days after his court appearance – for which he was handed a conditional discharge after admitting criminal damage – he was seen appearing to take a pen to the lens of the camera.

In July, the Ring also picked Grove up trying to rip the bell from the wall with his hands. A week later, he was filmed using a screwdriver to jab at the lens.

The ring camera has sparked a furious neighbour row

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The ring camera has sparked a furious neighbour rowCredit: SnapperSK
Footage also shows the neighbour with a hammer

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Footage also shows the neighbour with a hammerCredit: SnapperSK
Grove tampered with the locks and hinges of their doors

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Grove tampered with the locks and hinges of their doorsCredit: SnapperSK

Victoria: “I’ve probably contacted the police, council and my MP 50 times. It’s become like a full time job for me. I can’t keep doing this – I’m so worried for my uncle. I just want him to be moved now for his own safety.

“The council needs to take action with their tenant because we can’t keep living with the constant fear of his unpredictable behaviour.

“No one is taking responsibility and enough is enough. How much do we have to put up with until something is done?”

Victoria revealed she is increasingly fearful for her vulnerable uncle, who requires the use of a wheelchair and carers four times a day.

She claimed that their shared gate had been replaced six times because Grove had tampered with the locks or hinges.

‘I REGRET IT’

In December, Grove was seen knocking to a CCTV camera in a rear garden out of position with a hammer after wandering out of his property at midnight.

She added: “I promised my nan that I would always look after him.

“He doesn’t have the life that you or I have – and the bit of life he does have is being ruined by the man next door.”

Grove admitted criminal damage over the wire-cutting in August. Magistrates handed him a 12-month conditional discharge.

When approached by the Sun Online, Grove said he believed the doorbell intruded on the entrance to his home.

But he admitted his antics were “pathetic”.

He said: “It’s pathetic, I know. But I feel like a prisoner. I open the gate and the camera is looking straight at me. It’s just not right.

“But I did some silly things and I regret it.”

A Birmingham City Council spokesperson said: “Our community safety team are dealing with the concerns raised and will work with partner organisations, as appropriate, to address them.”  

A West Midlands Police spokesman said: “We know the importance of feeling secure in your own home and understand how unsettling it is if you don’t feel it is a safe place to be.

“We have taken action and investigated the incidents reported to us, resulting in a prosecution for criminal damage being brought before the courts.

“However we understand issues are continuing and officers remain in regular contact with the victim and their family to resolve the situation.”

The neighbour's antics have been caught on camera

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The neighbour’s antics have been caught on cameraCredit: SnapperSK
Grove recently admitted criminal damage

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Grove recently admitted criminal damageCredit: SnapperSK
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