Noisy neighbour whose loud music made furniture vibrate has hi-fi confiscated
A NOISY neighbour who played his music so loud furniture shook in adjoining flats has had his hi-fi and television set confiscated by a court.
Robert Baker, 40, plagued his neighbours for months with music and singing, Plymouth magistrates heard.
A council officer answering one complaint found the noise was so loud that the furniture in other flats was vibrating, the court was told.
Magistrates fined Baker £250, ordered that he pay £135 costs and £15 victim surcharge.
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His sound system, television set and some CDs were confiscated. They had already been seized by Plymouth City Council.
Presiding magistrate Diana Baumer said: "We sympathise with your problems, but you cannot keep playing loud music. Make sure you use those headphones."
But the bench refused an application by Plymouth City Council to hand an Anti-Social Behaviour Order to Baker.
It would have made it a criminal offence to cause any noise nuisance audible outside anywhere he lived or stayed.
Baker, of How Street, the Barbican, admitted three breaches of an abatement notice preventing a nuisance caused by loud music, singing and shouting in May and June.
Andrea Gilbert, for Plymouth City Council, said neighbours in the town house had been complaining for a year about noise before the authority served the order.
She said the council and landlords Plymouth Community Homes had tried to talk to Baker about the problem, but with no response.
Mrs Gilbert added the music was so loud in the communal stairway that the officer had to wait for a gap between songs to knock on the door of his top-floor flat and serve the abatement notice.
But she added an officer was called back to the flats on May 23.
The court heard music with loud bass and singing was heard, with the music so loud that furniture was vibrating in a neighbouring flat.
Mrs Gilbert said the council was alerted to the noise again on June 15 and again furniture in neighbouring flats was found to be vibrating.
She added the artist and song could clearly be identified.
Mrs Gilbert said three days later music was again so loud it could be heard over the normal volume of television sets in neighbouring flats.
She added the council used its legal power to enter the flat and seize Baker's hi-fi, his television set and some CDs. Their combined value was said to be £70.
Paul Brookman, for Baker, said he suffered from bipolar disorder, or manic depression.
He also had post traumatic stress disorder, after he was attacked and held hostage in 2010.
Mr Brookman said Baker had managed to keep the noise down since his last breach of the order three months ago.
He had bought a television set, as he was allowed to do, but there had been no complaints.
Mr Brookman said the abatement notice remained in place and if he continued to cause a noise nuisance, he could lose his tenancy.