A WOMAN feeling unsafe in her own home said she was ignored when she called 911 for help – so she took matters into her own hands.
Jennifer McLeggan moved from Queens to Long Island, New York to raise her daughter in a backyard house.
But she ended up dealing with neighbors who were eventually arrested and charged with harassment.
John McEneaney was charged with first-degree criminal infidelity and harassment, while Mindy Canarick was charged with third-degree criminal manipulation CBS News.
The case drew national attention in July 2020.
“In New York City, it’s difficult to pay rent and put down a down payment at the same time,” McLeggan said NBC News at that time.
“It is not easy. I’ve had many top ramen nights.”
When she had saved enough to buy a home in Valley Stream, where the population is about 28 percent black, McLeggan looked forward to raising her daughter in a diverse suburb.
But McLeggan’s dream soon took a turn.
she was allegedly harassed by the neighborsShe claimed she threw feces and dead squirrels in her yard.
A neighbor reportedly even told McLeggan she could be “obliterated.”
McLeggan also claimed she was intimidated by air guns, which was later confirmed during the investigation.
McLeggan called the Nassau County Police Department but claimed their complaints were not taken seriously.
So she decided to take matters into her own hands and handwritten a sign explaining all the allegations against her neighbors.
McLeggan’s posting of the sign drew national attention, including from civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump, who eventually represented the woman.
“This type of behavior happened in the ’50s and ’60s to drive black families out of ‘white neighborhoods.'” It was NOT supposed to happen in 2020… Nassau County Police say they are investigating, but Ms. McLeggan needs to be arrested as soon as possible!”, Crump tweeted on July 14, 2020.
Many others rallied around McLeggan to offer their support.
Some took turns standing guard outside their home, while others started a GoFundMe that raised over $50,000 for the mother.
A protest also took place in McLeggan’s neighborhood, creating the hashtag #StandWithJennifer.
“We take these allegations seriously, and the Nassau County Police Department is conducting a thorough investigation into the matter,” Nassau County Executive Secretary Laura Curran said in a statement at the time, according to NBC News.
A month after she posted the sign on her front door, McLeggan’s two white neighbors, McEneaney and Canarick, were charged.
Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas announced the charges after opening an investigation into the allegations.
“This behavior crossed the line between bad neighborhoods and crime,” Singas said at the time.
“I was heartbroken when I saw the sign on Mrs McLeggan’s door. Nassau County is a very safe place to live and no one should feel threatened in their own home.”
Among other things, the investigation revealed that between April 2017 and July 2020, McEneaney repeatedly fired a shotgun in a “dangerous manner” across McLeggan’s lawn, according to prosecutors.
This was done “allegedly as a form of harassment to upset or upset her,” prosecutors said. At least four pellets were discovered on McLeggan’s lawn.
In March 2021, Canarick was sentenced to a one-year parole after completing a diversity and inclusion program news day.
McEneaney pleaded guilty to criminal mischief charges. According to Newsday, he was sentenced to three years’ probation in 2022 and also had to take an anti-racism course online.