J’Accuse- the Cost of Innocence

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J’Accuse- The Cost of Innocence

It is 6:00 am. in Lorain - Do you  know where your attorney is?

What gives me the right to stick my nose in , who appointed me the guardian of the gate? Part one

I paid my dues with 11 months of hell!

 John Paul Sartre got it right when he stated in his play - No Exit


The accuser and the accusations:

A neighbor, elderly and alone (who fully believed in her accusations) and since she wasn’t a known trouble maker or on anyone’s radar was totally believable- so the complaints made to the various authorities seemed reasonable.

1. a male neighbor throwing things at her house

2. male footprints in the freshly fallen snow leading to her front door from the neighbors

3. weapons being hidden between the houses

4.  a male neighbor exposing himself through the fence

5. a neighbor opening the fire hydrants on the street

6. a male neighbor pointing a gun at her through the back door

7. a male neighbor hiding in the shrubs

8. intruders in her basement

9. intruders inside her house

10. up on her roof at night

11. neighbors cutting her phone lines

So I  would ask you - you are the Lorain Police Department -  you are getting these calls from an elderly woman, all alone- starting in June and carrying through to May of the next year. You send squad cars -you  check - you wake people from a sound sleep at all times of the night to make sure they are home and not harassing an elderly woman.

 You respond when a citizen complains, it is documented. The elderly woman tells the rest of the neighborhood what it happening to her, enlisting their aid. The family of the accuser calls the accused family “perverts”-among other insulting remarks.


The REST of  the story :

1. the things being thrown -tennis balls- coming across and into her yard as the kids in a neighboring home are playing ball.

2.  footprints in the snow- the mail carrier coming from one house delivering to another

3. weapons ( supposedly being hidden to hit the neighbors on the head) - fallen tree limbs from her own tree

4. will be addressed at the end of this  piece

5. the fire dept. was called by the accuser, and the LFD were very irate, it was infact the Lorain Water Dept. as they had a water line burst on Oberlin Avenue. So when the Fire Dept then turned off the gushing fire hydrant the water dept.  guys came running down the street waving their  arms.

6. The gun , after three such calls and reports it  turns out, when questioned further, that the “gun” was actually a “RAY  GUN” and this  wonderful  invention (invented apparently by  the accused) could make her steel back door  disappear for 8 seconds at a time and she had to  blink to get it back!

7. The shrub - was an over 50 foot maple tree, which not only did the accused manage to climb, in the dark - but did so in a DRESS. (ouch!)

8. The intruders (now there were two) the accused and his wife- apparently getting in through the vent in the glass block window

9. Picture this if you will. The police are called the “intruders” (we now have two again) are in the house, armed - one officer arrives, he has called for back up however there is a serious  problem elsewhere other officers are tied up on another call, with caution the officer calls to the intruders to  come out of  the closet. Nothing, silence- weapon at the ready he throws open the door , no  one

Ma’am are you  sure they went in here?

the accuser:

What is  the matter with you ? Can’t you see them- they are hiding under that lampshade!

Call for back up was cancelled!

10. Up on the roof (raccoons using her roof as a route from one tree to another )

11. The phone lines were cut as a truck making deliveries to More for Less caught the overhead lines and ripped them down.

The EFFECT:( Due to these accusations):

1.  Hundreds of dollars were spent by the accused on lawyers letters, dealing with the accusations, building higher fences. Family members of the accuser making insulting and damning remarks (rather than seeing the problem-  again lawyers letters)

2. Months of  harassment, being woken from a sound sleep at all hours of the night with the police at the door responding to the accusations. Not being comfortable and able to relax in your OWN home.

3. Documenting your every move for over a year. Because when someone makes an accusation that you were doing something at a certain time you better have proof that you were elsewhere and have a reliable witness.

So you keep a daily/hourly diary, where you were, who  was with you, if you go to the store alone -you keep the time stamped receipt. You cannot even go into your back yard without a witness or  companion. Your reputation is  shot! Your life becomes about PROVING YOUR INNOCENCE every day, just because “J’Accuse”.

4. The embarrassment is bad enough but the stress takes its toll, infact this living on the accusatory knife edge ( and people will say - hmmmm where there is  smoke…..) effects you emotionally and physically you become ill. You  can’t sleep, you are on the defensive, your life is turned upside down and the lives of your family, you are angry, bewildered and hurt .

Everyday you have to prove innocence because someone made an accusation, that on the face of it, was believable. You spend your days “explaining” and your nights waiting for the next phone call or knock on the door wanting to  know what you are doing and where you  have been .

It is only when you look into the “rest of  the story” that you realize that as ridiculous as these accusations really  were the suffering, expense and the toll on a family -wasn’t funny.

So I will continue to “make it my business”-having lived through “J’accuse”- to make sure that no one else (no matter who) doesn’t have to go through the same thing-

I will take accusations with skepticism , especially by ”nom de plumes” in the same context as a

man in a tree in a dress, shooting a ray gun that makes steel  doors disappear, whilst waggling through a slit in the fence.”

As for media- 

since I have also been “accused” of being able to drive developers from town (on the FRONT page of the Morning Journal  and by their illustrious editor Cole )

Veard said he hasn’t faced opposition only from council, but criticism from citizen activists, such as downtown resident Loraine Ritchie. Veard said Ritchie has been a critic of his developments.

“What is she attacking me for?” Veard said. “Let her develop downtown Lorain.”

Ritchie declined to speak to The Morning Journal.

But Veard said he’s tired of the criticism.

“I lost money on the Duane Building. I lost money on the Antlers Building. I haven’t made a dime yet on City Center. … Let them throw darts at someone else.”

only to have the next day in the Chronicle and the the same person “changing the tale” 

Despite having three buildings up for sale downtown, local developer Jon Veard said Tuesday he has no intention of leaving the city.


“I’m not selling because I’m mad about the park. Maybe (City Council) did me a favor when they shot it down. Building condos in downtown Lorain is risky business,” Veard said.

And when is a head line not a headline? (just three weeks ago) - Two different days -two different headlines (same newspaper Morning Journal  -two different tales -same story-

LORAIN COUPLE DENIED TAX ABATEMENT BY OHIO BOARD OF TAX APPEALS (  did not deny abatement)  read the documents  -no  jurisdiction

And the next day


Therefore, I will also continue to be skeptical of what I read- same players.

THE  DE -FENCE NO. 4 -in the Accusations list

Oh! and the “exposing of a male part of the anatomy  through the fence (from two properties away I might add) I present for your edification:


  and X marks the spot where “it”  waggled at her

note the height off the ground and the closeup of  the “hole in the fence”

 and in fact on the “other side” of the fence is a pond .

so  in-order to ”waggle ” the rest of the “waggle-ee” would have been a “wet waggler”

The police report taken at the time was a remarkable document, as the officer, in trying to describe how in order to  “waggle”  the contortions needed to accomplish such  a remarkable feat, was very thorough and to the reader of  the report- it  was very funny. Shawn Foucher, reporter for  the Chronicle , found the police report to be worthy of  the headline that week

If the Fence Don’t Fit-  You  have to  Acquit”

Note : Bear in mind the next”waggler” could be you! The peace of mind you save could be your own!


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