A family says their neighbor is playing tapes of racist slurs and monkey noises. Police say it is “not subject to criminal prosecution”

“The minute we found this house, I loved it,” Jannis Martinez told CNN. “It was all I envisioned for my family and to raise my children in a nice and quiet neighborhood.”

Now Martinez, who is black, says music from a neighbor, racial slurs, flashing lights and monkey sounds have made her family’s life miserable.

“I’m not going to lie, if I had a little imagination it would be like this, we wouldn’t have bought this house. I would never sign for it,” she said.

According to Martinez, the harassment started with flashing lights.

“We have noticed a little erratic behavior like these flashing lights that are on a sensor. When my family or any other family leaves or returns home, they all start to flash,” Martinez said. “When the sensors are activated, loud music starts playing. It changes the music depending on which family is activating the music.”

Martinez added that there were multiple cameras on his house.

“We are all under 24/7 surveillance with cameras in all directions of her house,” she said.

More recently, Martinez said, the music has shifted to monkey sounds.

“My husband parked his truck on the street outside his house, which is city property, and instead of music he started playing monkey noises,” Martinez said.

Martinez says the neighbor makes monkey noises every time they arrive or leave their house.

Following recent phone calls to local police by the Martinez family complaining about the noise and the lights, Martinez says the neighbor’s actions have escalated.

“Since that day he’s been playing N —– skits he found online,” she said. Martinez said he plays skits that say, “Black people have nothing else to do but go to a comedy club on a Friday night” and “Hey everyone, look, it’s N —– man. Everyone says, ‘Hi N —– man.’ ”

“The situation is really heartbreaking,” she said.

Police told CNN they were “very aware of the current situation.”

“The observed conduct has been reviewed with the city attorney for potential criminal penalties; however, it has been determined that the activity, while appalling, is not subject to criminal prosecution,” the department said. Virginia Beach police in a statement.

“He finds ways to stay under the law,” Martinez said. “He can’t be wrong in the eyes of the law. He doesn’t care about morals.”

“It’s hopeless and sad. I’m so exhausted,” she said.

CNN has reached out to the neighbor for comment but has not received a response.

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About Ethel Nester

Ethel Nester

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