Man fined for swearing at neighbours during lockdown barbeque

James Patzelt admitted breaching an order by shouting abuse about his neighbours during a family barbecue.

James Patzelt admitted breaching an order by shouting abuse about his neighbours during a family barbecue. - Credit: Archant

A Norwich man has admitted breaching an order by hurling abuse at his neighbours during a back garden barbecue during the first coronavirus lockdown. 


James Patzelt, 39, from Edwards Road in Sprowston, was charged with using threatening, abusive words and behaviour and with failing to comply with a Community Protection Notice following the incident on May 9. 


Magistrates in Great Yarmouth heard that Patzelt, who lives in the small cul-de-sac with his wife and three children, was subject of a restraining order following a long-running dispute with his neighbours. 


The court was told that although his neighbours were not in their garden at the time, his foul-mouthed rant against them was captured on CCTV. 


Prosecuting Stephen Poole said: “Mr Patzelt was hosting a family barbecue, perhaps he shouldn’t have had that many people there, but there was singing and music. 


“I accept that the neighbours were not in their garden and he couldn’t see them but he did use bad language about them which was heard by them. 


“At one point he threw a toy over the fence. Then he said to one of the other people there ‘these ******* ***** next door aren’t going to do the smart thing and chuck it back. Then they wonder why we don’t like them’, which you could hear quite clearly on the CCTV. 

The neighbouring houses at Edwards Road in Sprowston.

The neighbouring houses on Edwards Road in Sprowston. - Credit: Simon Parkin

“There was a series of other similar abusive language and the CCTV tape goes on for two hours. This was a breach of the Community Protection Notice between the neighbours that was in place though we accept it wasn’t direct contact with the neighbours.”


Patzelt pleaded guilty to breaching the Community Protection Notice and the second charge was dropped after he agreed to the order being extended for a further six months until July 2021.


He was fined £120 and ordered to pay £139 in costs.


Dave Foulkes, defending, said: “The situation is ongoing but Mr Patzelt and his family are trying to move but that is not very easy to achieve in the present climate, but that might be the long term solution.


“But he accepts that this was a relatively minor breach of the terms of the order.”


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