August 24, 2012
Neighbours fed up of behaviour of ex-policeman

Residents in one area of Plan Village, Campden Park, say that they are fed up with the antics of an elderly neighbour,{{more}} and think it is high time for authorities to step in.

The immediate neighbors of retired police officer Cornelius Thompson accuse the man of terrorizing them day and night, with threats of violence and foul language, and believe he is allowed to do so by police.

When SEARCHLIGHT visited the area on Tuesday afternoon, Thompson, who had suffered a stroke less than a year ago, could be heard hurling obscenities at neighbours, from a window on the upper floor of his home, while the frustrated residents spoke about his behavior.

Kayann Garraway, a former neighbour who lived next door to Thompson, but has since moved to Clare Valley, lamented that the old man’s behaviour has got worse over the years, with little or no assistance from the law.

“This man is terrible, very, very terrible…. To listen to us tell you and to spend a night in the area is two different things.

“The latest hour in the night he would get up and he will stone almost every house; he will curse the worst dirty words you will ever hear. He will threaten you and when you talk to him he will curse you worse,” Garraway said.

“The main problem is that when you go to the police to make a report, they not doing anything about it; all they saying is ‘oh you mean the old ex-policeman, crazy Thompson?’ and they will just come and they will talk to him.

“They saying he is crazy, but to me he is not, because when the police come he will humble himself; but as soon as they turn the corner going, he start again. So, to me, he ain’t crazy, he know exactly what he doing.”

Garraway explained that neighbours in the area at one time signed a petition asking for help in dealing with the old man, who was described as a miserable nuisance, but nothing came out of it.

She said that the man was picked up by the police on only one occasion, but was brought back home the next day, and things returned to their usual, rowdy way.

“If it was ordinary people they woulda done do something.”

85-year-old Nathan Thomas, another neighbour who has lived in the area for only six months, said that he has been subjected to verbal and physical abuse by Thompson.

Thomas said that Thompson attempted to throw an old transformer at him some time ago, and as recently as days before, a conch shell was thrown at him, as he was feeding his dog.

“I don’t do him nothing; he is the most miserable old man I ever see; he telling me all about me mother that he don’t even know, he telling me how me stink, all manner of things.

“He is ridiculing me and he don’t know about me,” Thomas added.

“I believe he do some wrong things in the world and he just reflecting over it. I believe he do a lot of wrong things because all hour in the night this man misbehaving; people can’t sleep around here for him.

“When the police come, the police go and speak to him, but he don’t do no better, so I don’t know what the authorities could do to see if they could help us with this man; I would like to see them put a stop to it.”

The neighbours also complained that the children in the community are not excluded from Thompson’s verbal assaults.

They say that the man would make what they consider to be unacceptable comments to the children, when they are playing in the street, or have been sent on errands by their parents.

They also claim that he has two teenage males residing in the home with him.

One of the juveniles is the grandson of Thompson’s former common-law wife Elritha Small, who mysteriously disappeared three years ago.

She was last seen with Thompson at his home.

Neighbours of Thompson are asking for peace of mind, which they believe could only be achieved with his removal from society.

“It ain’t have nobody around here who don’t have a problem with the man; when the night come and he start to blow, me can’t sleep,” said one person who has lived in the area for more than 20 years, but did not wish to be identified.

“We call the police so many times, too many times…. The man is just getting worse and worse all the time. The man need to be moved from here, in my book…. He will say the stinkest things you would ever hear.

“If he is crazy, as they say, then he needs to go to the mental asylum… Suppose I stone his house and I mash up his windows, what would they do? Sometimes people are tempted to do him something,” the neighbour said.

SEARCHLIGHT attempted to speak to Thompson, who refused to answer questions.