Nightmare neighbour warned he faces jail after string of problems in Sunderland street

A nightmare neighbour has been warmed he faces five years in jail if he breaches a court order secured against him after a series of problems.

Kevin Conlin, of Newbury Street, Fulwell, Sunderland, has been hit with a Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) after a series of complaints including loud music, shouting, and harassment.

Sunderland City Council secured the CBO against Conlin on Tuesday, August 2.

Council officers said Conlin first came to the attention of the city council’s Neighbourhood Enforcement team in May 2021 after complaints from neighbours, who reported excessively loud music and shouting coming from Conlin’s address.

The case was heard at South Tyneside Magistrates' Court.

The council said complaints were investigated and substantiated by the council’s Neighbourhood Enforcement team through noise monitoring software, visits to the address and regular patrols.

In June 2021, Conlin was issued with a Community Protection Warning (CPW) and offered the chance to engage with support services, which the council said he declined.

The local authority said complaints from neighbours continued throughout July and August 2021, which were investigated and substantiated.

In August 2021 Conlin was issued with a Community Protection Notice (CPN) and again declined the offer of support.

Complaints about Conlin became more regular, including reports of noise nuisance, substance misuse in the street, and harassment.

A further investigation by the council’s Neighbourhood Enforcement Manager used noise monitoring software, CCTV footage and witness statements.

On 29 June 2022, Conlin was convicted of breach of CPN at South Tyneside Magistrates Court.

In addition to the conviction, the council’s Neighbourhood Enforcement Manager – with the support of Northumbria Police – made an application to the courts for a CBO against Conlin in an attempt to rectify his behaviour and protect members of the community.

The council said Conlin failed to attend the hearing and the CBO was granted in his absence.

He was also ordered to pay a £22 victim surcharge and legal costs of £150.

The Criminal Behaviour Order sets out that Conlin must not to act in an anti-social manner or cause annoyance, harassment, alarm or distress to any Sunderland resident.

If the CBO is breached, the court can impose a maximum sentence of up to five years imprisonment, a fine, or both.

Councillor Graeme Miller, Leader of Sunderland City Council and Chair of the Safer Sunderland Partnership, said: "No one should have to live in fear of intimidation or aggressive behaviour in their own community, but hopefully this order shows that when an individual does participate in antisocial behaviour that we will take appropriate action.

"In this case, Conlin was given multiple opportunities to turn his behaviour around, but instead of accepting support he continued to cause a nuisance and show a repeat disregard for his neighbours and the law."

The council said as part of a commitment to crack down on ASB in Sunderland, the local authority has taken a number of measures.

Since the start of 2021 this has included:

287 Community Protection Warnings

70 Community Protection Notices

4 Civil Injunctions

1 breach of civil injunction resulting in four-month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months

8 Closure Orders against problem properties

4 Criminal Behaviour Orders