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Couple to stand trial over year-long ‘campaign of harassment’ against neighbour in Chingford

Couple, 58 and 63, doused neighbour’s house in hose water, put up ‘clowns and dolls’ on their fence and called her ‘ugly wh**e’ in campaign of harassment lasting more than a year, court hears 

Couple to stand trial over year-long 'campaign of harassment' against neighbour in Chingford 1
  • Sandra Durdin and Trevor Dempsey are accused of a campaign of harassment
  • The now ex-couple are said to have harassed their neighbour in Chingford 
  • Joanne Shreeves, who lived next door for decades, alleges they caused distress 
  • The trial was due to take place today but Mrs Durdin tested positive for Covid 

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A former couple accused of a campaign of harassment against their neighbour, in which they used props and dolls, will stand trial next month.

Trevor Dempsey, 63, and now ex-wife Sandra Durdin, 58, allegedly put up a piece of black felt with colourful paint on it and flooded an alleyway belonging to Joanne Shreeves in Chingford, east London.

Mrs Durdin also allegedly called her neighbour an ‘ugly whore’ during the harassment campaign. 

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Stratford Magistrates’ Court heard the couple flooded the alleyway by overwatering their plants and also put barbed wire on their garden fence, where homes cost an average of £1.1m. 

The pair, now living in Ramsgate, Kent, deny harassment causing distress to Ms Shreeves between June 2020 and August 2021.

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Mrs Durdin also denies criminal damage by destroying a £1,350 CCTV camera belonging to Ms Shreeves in May 2021.

Trevor Dempsey, 62, and Sandra Durdin, 58, from Chingford, (pictured outside Thames Magistrates' Court last year) have previously denied flooding their neighbour's alleyway by overwatering plants and putting barbed wire on garden fencing as part of a harassment campaign and will go on trial next month

Trevor Dempsey, 62, and Sandra Durdin, 58, from Chingford, (pictured outside Thames Magistrates’ Court last year) have previously denied flooding their neighbour’s alleyway by overwatering plants and putting barbed wire on garden fencing as part of a harassment campaign and will go on trial next month
The former home (left) of Sandra Durdin, 58, and Trevor Dempsey, 62, in Chingford, north London, who have been accused by their old neighbour (right) of harassing them for over a year

The former home (left) of Sandra Durdin, 58, and Trevor Dempsey, 62, in Chingford, north London, who have been accused by their old neighbour (right) of harassing them for over a year

The couple, who were neighbours to Shreeves for four decades, were due to stand trial at Stratford Magistrates’ Court today, Monday, but Durdin tested postive to Covid-19 last night and has moderate symptoms. 

A witness in the case had also tested positive for Covid. 

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The trial was adjourned until 3 May at Stratford Magistrates’ Court.

Prosecutor Lucy McGarr said the allegations against the former couple also included ‘putting up clowns and dolls’ on their neighbour’s fence.

Dempsey also allegedly parked vehicles on the complainant’s drive.

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The former couple (pictured last year), who now live in Ramsgate in Kent, were bailed to appear for trial today which will now take place next month

The former couple (pictured last year), who now live in Ramsgate in Kent, were bailed to appear for trial today which will now take place next month

The case was described as ‘complex’ and ‘messy to say the least’ before it was adjourned for a review ahead of a further hearing on May 3 at Thames Magistrates’ Court.

District Judge Jane McIvor directed the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to decide ‘whether it is in the public interest to continue’ with proceedings ahead of that date.

Dempsey, who sat in the dock on Monday wearing a dark suit, spoke to confirm his details and tell the court he has now separated from Durdin.

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The defendants, both of whom are on bail will not be required to attend in May.

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