Man cuts hole in neighbour’s hedge so he can get a better view

A man has been slapped with a restraining order after he cut a hole in his neighbour’s hedge to get a better view of the mountains. It was part of a campaign of harassment by Alexander Edwards against his neighbor.

Edwards also shone a torch at his neighbour’s CCTV camera, sang rap music and goaded dogs into barking late at night. The victim complained to both the council and North Wales Police and on Wednesday (30 March) Edwards admitted harassing his next door neighbor Ian Cox, Conwy, North Wales.

The court heard it was Edwards’ mother Jane Edwards who had started a row with Mr Cox and, when Edwards came to live with her, Edwards became “embroiled” in that row. Prosecutor Rhian Jackson said that Mr Cox reported issues with Mrs Edwards to Conwy Council as long ago as 2014.

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He was helped by an anti-social behavior officer and was advised to keep a log. Mr Cox also installed a CCTV camera. In 2020 a hole appeared in Mr Cox’s hedge. There was no CCTV footage of the culprit but Edwards later admitted making it “so he could see the view of the mountains from his bedroom window.”

But there was footage of Edwards shining a torch at the CCTV camera at night. The court heard Edwards would also encourage dogs to bark at midnight or 1am.

Prosecutor Rhian Jackson said that Mr Cox reported issues with Mrs Edwards to Conwy Council as long ago as 2014. In another incident, Edwards would sing rap music lyrics at Mr Cox.

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These included the line “I’m f****** gonna kill yer,” said the prosecutor. The case centered on a series of incidents between July 2021 and January this year which amounted to harassment. The prosecutor said someone, later found to be the defendant, cut the hole, several feet square, in Mr Cox’s hedge without permission on July 5.

Then Edwards stuck up his middle finger towards Mr Cox in their street on August 2. He did the same to Mr Cox in his van, then ran after him causing alarm, on January 4.

“He just wants to be left alone to live a normal life,” said the prosecutor. Graham Parry, defending, said Edwards had had a view down the valley until the hedge grew “out of control.”

He said the defendant was allowed to cut the hedge, albeit on his own side. The District Judge Gwyn Jones told Edwards in the dock: “For whatever reason, you got embroiled in a dispute which is not of your making.

“Whatever the rights and wrongs of this matter, you conducted a series of little acts which caused harassment to your neighbour. It was anti-social behaviour.”

The District Judge noted that Edwards had never “troubled the courts” before but he added: “I’m satisfied that this offense is serious enough to justify a community order.” As well as imposing a 12-month community order to do unpaid work, the District Judge made a four-year restraining order prohibiting the defendant from contacting or approaching Ian Cox directly or indirectly.

It also bans him from entering the curtilage of any property occupied by Mr Cox. The defendant must also pay £85 costs and a £95 surcharge.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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