Internet Sides With Neighbor Who Let Teenager Spend Night in Jail to Teach Him a Lesson

When is it okay to involve the police in neighborly disputes? An individual, known as @Storm_Lady on Reddit, posed this question in a post on the "Am I the A**hole" subreddit, asking if they were in the wrong for calling the police on their teenage neighbor after asking several times for him not to hang out on their roof.

@Storm_Lady explained in the now-viral post that they recently purchased the apartment building they lived in and share with another family consisting of two parents and two sons. The poster lives alone in the second-floor apartment and the family lives on the first floor.

The post went on to say that one day, @Storm_Lady was on the balcony and heard the husband complaining that he wanted to purchase the place but that he was beaten to it. After a few months of renovation, @Storm_Lady had turned her roof into a garden, full of flowers, vegetable plants, and furniture for seating.

"While coming out one day I met my neighbour and she asked to see the garden with her sons," @Storm_Lady explained. "I showed it off and thought that was the end of it."

But that was not the end of it. @Storm_Lady began noticing that the furniture on the roof was rearranged and some of the flowers were cut. That's when they installed a camera on the roof which picked up footage of the teenage sons and some of their friends jumping over the fence into @Storm_Lady's section of the roof.

@Storm_Lady said they had a conversation with the boys' parents asking them to stop going on their part of the roof. They said that they're not home very often and that "if something happened there is no way to open the door to help them (metal door with a huge padlock)."

But the boys continued to go on the roof and allegedly even started destroying the plants in retaliation for "telling on them."

"So I gave their mother an ultimatum," the post said. "They either stop or I will be calling the police. She scoffed and called me an entitled b*tch."

Neighbor Calls Cops on Boy
A now-viral Reddit post posed the question of whether having their teenage neighbor arrested for hanging out on their roof was too harsh. This undated photo shows a person wearing a prison jumpsuit and handcuffs inside a jail. LightFieldStudios/Getty Images

The next time the camera picked up the boys on the roof, @Storm_Lady called the police and informed them that someone had broken onto their property. The post explained that even though the police arrived quickly, one of the boys had managed to escape, but their brother was taken to the precinct.

The post went on saying that the boy's father screamed at them to drop the charges. "I just threatened to call the police on him as well and went to bed," the post said.

According to the Children's Defense Fund, approximately 1,995 children are arrested every day in the United States. CDF reported over 728,000 children arrests in 2018, even though that rate was a 63 percent reduction since 2009.

However, there are extreme racial disparities when it comes to the number of children within the justice system. CDF reported that while 62 percent of children arrested are white, "children of color were nearly two times more likely to be arrested than white children," and "Black children were two and a half times more likely."

@Storm_Lady explained that they dropped the charges in the morning so the teenager spent the night in jail. The boy's mother allegedly said he spent the night with "drug dealers and thugs."

"I was so sure of my decision, that I was teaching him the consequences of his actions," the post finished. "But my mom said that I was too harsh, she said that I punished the parents not that I taught the kid a lesson."

More than 1,400 commenters flooded the comments section with their opinions, many of them supporting @Storm_Lady's decision to involve the cops.

"If something were to happen to the children while they're hopping to or are on your balcony, you could be held liable depending on the country," one Redditor wrote. "In the US I can imagine the parents getting a shifty lawyer who would argue that the injury happened while the kid was 51 [percent] on your balcony, so you should be held liable for them falling from the building."

Other users said they wouldn't have dropped the charges, saying the teenager and his parents needed to realize there were consequences for their actions.

"Your neighbors are entitled AHs," the user wrote. "And one day their son will get in more serious trouble and it'll be all their fault. I wouldn't have dropped the charges."

One commenter was quick to mention that the teen probably didn't even share his cell with any adult prisoners and that dropping the charges was a nice thing to do.

"He probably wasn't in a cell with any adult prisoners anyway," the user said. "And honestly deserved the charges, so you were super nice to drop them at all."