Kyle Barnett Mar. 30, 2015, 7:15am


GRETNA – A Kenner couple is suing their neighbors for allegedly engaging in a pattern of harassment.

Ronald and Beverly Crais filed suit against Violet Ertel and Gerald J. Arcement in the 24th Judicial District Court on Feb. 11.

The plaintiffs claim that they own a home locate at 29 Zion St. in Kenner as well as an empty lot next door abutting a home owned and occupied by Ertel. The Crais family alleges they had good relationship with Ertel until Arcement moved in her with her.

The plaintiffs contend that in September 2013 they had a survey conducted on their property for preparation of installing a perimeter fence. The Crais family asserts that when Arcement saw the survey line string in the area he untied the string and engaged in harassment of Ronald Crais in which he allegedly brandished a box cutter towards him in a threatening manner and the Kenner Police served him with a summons for assault.

The plaintiffs claim that after the fence was constructed, in January 2014 they found paint on the iron fence and noticed Arcement had a paint brush and a drop cloth with the same color paint on it and when they inquired he told them he had been cleaning his paint brush near their fence. Following that incident Ronald Crais took a photograph of the painted fence and reported Arcement to the Kenner Police. Further, on Feb. 11, 2014 Beverly Crais alleges Arcement exposed his genitals to her and shook them and around the same time placed a pile of mud near their fence in an alleged attempt to get it to rust.

The Crais family contends Arcement continues to harass and intimidate them on a continual basis including damaging their property, “flipping them off” when driving by their home and parking on their property. Lastly, the plaintiffs allege due to the incidents they constructed an eight foot tall privacy fence to block the defendants property. However, Ertel and Arcement allegedly installed a security camera at the top of the fence and pointed directly at their enclosed porch and that any video the camera has picked up may be used by the them for “nefarious” purposes.

The defendant is accused of invasion of privacy, breach of duty and violation of state law.

An unspecified amount in damages is sought for the violation of their rights, harassment, intimidation, property damage and attorney’s costs and fees.

The plaintiffs are represented by attorney Carl N. Finley of Metairie.

The case has been assigned to Division K Judge Ellen Shirer Kovach.

Case no. 746-689.

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