Streets of fear in Kelso

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

NOT SAFE: Jody Croft, pictured with her new baby John, says her car was trashed by a group of 30 people throwing bricks. One of the bricks, which went through the front window of the house, narrowly missed John’s head as he slept. Photo: PHILL MURRAY 022515pkelsoJODY Croft has only been living in Kelso’s Culnane Place for four months, but she says she fears for the safety of her young family.
Nanjing Night Net

Ms Croft is the second Kelso resident to come forward in the past week saying neighbours are making their life a living hell.

Last week the Western Advocate reported that Maria Sargent’s home in Spofforth Place had been targeted by vandals who had placed soiled nappies in the mail box, poisoned her plants, written expletives in her lawn with weed killer, blown up her letterbox and spray-painted obscene images on her house.

Now Ms Croft says she and other residents in her street are being targeted by a group of about 30 teenagers.

She said she was inside her house in the middle of the day recently when she heard people out the front yelling expletives before missiles came crashing through her front window.

Ms Croft said a brick missed her four-week-old baby son John by a matter of centimetres.

Ms Croft said she has since been to the Department of Housing and Police, but there appears little can be done.

“The Department of Housing said I can put in for a transfer but that could take up to six months,” she said. “They aren’t concerned at all. They offered to board up every window in the house for protection.”

Ms Croft said the problem started about one month ago because she wouldn’t give some of the group a lift into town in her car. She was heavily pregnant at the time.

“They started calling me a [expletive],” she said.

The verbal abuse continued over the weeks but the situation escalated on a recent Friday afternoon. When Ms Croft heard a commotion out the front, she went out and was confronted by a large group of people.

“When I got out the front there were 30 people, mostly young kids, but some taller ones. They were throwing bricks, and a pot plant also came through the window,” she said.

Ms Croft’s partner Luke Wharton said he went out after her and told her to go back inside.

“I was scared for her safety; as it is, one of the bricks almost hit our newborn son,” he said.

During the incident, the front glass window of the house was smashed and Ms Croft’s car, which was parked under a carport behind the front fence, was extensively damaged.

Its front windscreen and side window was smashed and every panel dented by flying bricks.

Ms Croft said that ever since the incident she has been scared to stay in the house.

“It’s affecting my mental health, I can’t sleep,” she said.

As for her car, she says she doesn’t know what she will do.

“I haven’t got money to fix it or get a new one.”

Mr Wharton said he and Ms Croft decided to contact the paper because he doesn’t think people realise how bad things are in some areas of Kelso.

“You see ‘houso’ shows on TV and they’ve got nothing on this,” he said

Duty officer with Chifley Local Area Command Inspector Colin Cracknell said police were aware of “tensions” in the Kelso area and were subsequently sending both uniformed and undercover police to the area on a regular basis.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.