Dawn McDowell, 3 children are afraid in their own home


A mom of three says she is fearful of a neighbor who allegedly stabbed her canine and who, in a Facebook video she took, shouts the N-word repeatedly from his porch and says, “The KKK is coming.”

Five years in the past, Dawn McDowell, an worker at Petco, moved into the Hammond, Ind., home she shares together with her three children: a daughter, 17, a son (who has cerebral palsy and epilepsy), 14, and a daughter, 11 months. 

McDowell says that since August 2017, her neighbor Richard Dean Wojtas has harassed her with bodily threats and racist taunts. “We live behind a radio station, and one night, he started running from his home to the parking lot yelling, ‘I hate you [N-word], you gang bangers,” McDowell, 40, tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “When he came outside again holding a brown paper bag, I called the police.” 

In October 2017, when she was 5 months pregnant, McDowell acquired a hysterical cellphone name when she was at work, from her eldest daughter. “She said, ‘Animal control and the police are here, you have to come home.’” McDowell got here home to search out her 5-year-old pit bull Sasha in Wojtas’s yard with a knife caught in her again.

“I was told that Sasha had gotten into Richard’s yard and attacked one of his dogs,” McDowell tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “Richard hit Sasha in the head with a hammer and stabbed her eight times, supposedly to save his dog.” Fortunately, Sasha survived.

McDowell doubted that her canine, who assists her nonverbal son throughout seizures, is able to aggressive conduct.

“Sasha’s only injuries were her stab wounds, and there was no physical evidence that she attacked another dog or even entered Richard’s yard,” she says. “But Richard once told me that his dogs were aggressive and one had attacked the other.”

Wojtas sued McDowell for his medical payments — allegedly $707.40 for his canine’s wounds and $2,640 for a hand harm he sustained making an attempt to interrupt up the canine struggle — and she or he countersued for $2,300, the price of Sasha’s surgical procedure.

Before their court docket date in January 2018, McDowell says Wojtas threatened her once more. “One day, I let out my dogs in my yard, and Richard came out on his porch and loaded his shotgun,” McDowell tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “He was yelling that he was going to kill my dog, so I took his photo and called the police.”

A possible trigger affidavit despatched to Yahoo Lifestyle by the Hammond Police Department exhibits that Wojtas was charged with felony intimidation and was issued a no-contact order.

Dawn McDowell is in a authorized battle together with her Indiana next-door neighbor Richard Dean Wojtas, whom accuses of racial harassment. (Screenshot: WGN-TV)

In court docket, a choose dominated that McDowell’s canine was at fault and ordered her to pay Wojtas $3,482.70, in accordance with The Times of Northwest Indiana. “The judge said, ‘You’re not going to like my verdict, but since your dog is a pit bull….” she tells Yahoo Lifestyle.

Over the summer time, Wojtas reportedly tried to enter an order to garnish McDowell’s wages. Later that 12 months, she filed for chapter. In retaliation, she alleges that Wojtas fired his shotgun from his porch, yelled the N-word, and threw peach-colored paint on her purple automobile. “The police used their body camera to find a trail of paint leading back to Richard’s home,” McDowell tells Yahoo Lifestyle.

She just lately filmed a person — allegedly Wojtas — yelling “Kill all the [N-word]” and “The KKK is coming” and posted it on Facebook. A police consultant tells Yahoo Lifestyle that “Hammond Police detectives are … deciding if submitting further fees is an choice at the moment. Detectives are working carefully with the sufferer to make sure that every part doable is finished to cease this prison conduct.”

Wojtas’s lawyer, Shane O’Donnell, was not obtainable when referred to as for remark by Yahoo Lifestyle. He advised The Times of Northwest Indiana that Wojtas is a “law-abiding citizen” saying, “The neighbors’ feud began when my client’s neighbor’s dog had attacked him and his dog on his property.” 

O’Donnell stated Wojtas had a shotgun to guard towards McDowell’s canine. “He had every right to be outside and have a legally obtained shotgun, for which he has a valid license for,” O’Donnell advised information outlet. “Because [McDowell] doesn’t like my client, she called the police and said he threatened her with the gun, which isn’t true.”   

McDowell says her children are fearful of Wojtas, however that she doesn’t wish to be pushed out of her neighborhood. “Why should I have to leave? I’m in a bad financial bind, in bankruptcy, and can’t afford a new roof,” she tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “He is trying to intimidate me.”

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