Jack and Mindy Ross were so fed up with their next-door neighbors’ continuous dirt bike activity that they called code enforcement officials seeking a solution.
But code officials in the California Coachella Valley, a rural desert area east of Los Angeles, mostly met them with indifference, suggesting they begin documenting the dirt bike activity with cameras.
The Rosses main complaint was that the dirt bikes were too loud and caused unhealthy fumes that drifted into their yard. Mindy’s doctor even had to prescribe her medication to help her breathe.
After shooting several photos and videos, the Rosses gathered their evidence and filed a restraining order against their neighbors.
A judge denied that request.
So the dirt biking continued and the Rosses began suspecting that things weren’t kosher within the Joshua Tree Court system, according to the Desert Valley Star.
“It was really odd, as if they had insider connections with the courts and the Sheriffs,” Mindy said, “We’ve had our calls to dispatch cancelled, not by us but by someone high up over there. The dispatcher even told us they don’t have to come out if we call – that someone told them not to go out.”
The Rosses eventually gave up, not even bothering to take photos or shoot video anymore.
But then their neighbors filed a restraining order against them, complaining about the photos and videos.
A judge granted that request.
The restraining order prohibited the Rosses from photographing or filming their neighbors while they are dirt biking. It is effective for three years.
The judge also confiscated the Rosses’ videos and photos, sealing them from the court records and locking them in a court safe.
How terrible were these pictures? Were they riding nude?
“They were dressed in motocross outfits,” said Mindy, “They had on normal clothes, off road gear and helmets. I can’t figure out why those pictures had to be locked up. Now I have no evidence. Our attorney dropped the ball, totally.
He didn’t fight for me. Looking back it seems he might have been in cahoots with those folks. We asked him to but he never brought up what our neighbors were doing that caused all this in the first place.”
The Rosses decided to appeal, so they asked their attorney to recommend them an appellate lawyer.
He referred them to the same attorney who had just represented their neighbors.
Can you say shake down?