Nightmare Wigan neighbour jailed after breaching ‘swearing abuse’ injunction – just five hours after it was issued

By Colin Henrys

A nightmare Wigan neighbour has been jailed for eight months and lost his house after breaching an Anti-Social Behaviour Injunction – just five hours after it was issued.

Unemployed Darren Lee, 46, of Coronation Avenue, Atherton, made his neighbour’s lives hell by regularly shouting and swearing through the night.

Wigan and Leigh Housing (WALH), who owned Lee’s house, spoke to him on three separate occasions but had to apply for the injunction when complaints continued.

Just five hours after it was issued however, Lee breached the ASBI by swearing and causing a nuisance and the court heard he then breached it twice more in the same day.

In total Lee breached the conditions of the injunction on nine separate occasions and was arrested again last month.

Having initially denied the allegations, he accepted the breaches at the beginning of a hearing before District Judge Gordon last week.

Lee told the court being homeless for 25 years had left him struggling to adapt to a normal life but Judge Gordon found by breaching the injunction he was in contempt of court.

Judge Gordon jailed Lee for eight months and granted possession of his former house back to the local authority.

Neil Turner, WALH’s chair of the board, said: “The message is simple and clear, change your behaviour or lose your home.

“This result is due to both the hard work and dedication of Wigan and Leigh Housing’s officers and the courage of Lee’s neighbours who simply refused to sit back and take his abusive behaviour.”

Wigan Council’s cabinet member for housing, Cllr Chris Ready, also welcomed the decision.

He said: “It is clear this person blatantly ignored the conditions of his injunction time and time again.

“As such it appears he treated the whole process with contempt and as a result he’s paid a hefty price.

“More significantly, Lee chose to treat his neighbours with a level of disrespect, discourtesy and downright abuse that was clearly unacceptable.

“No one should have to tolerate such behaviour and by taking strong and decisive action we have proved that we won’t tolerate it.”

Image courtesy of Google Maps, with thanks.

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