Hubbard homeowner makes federal case out of horn honking 'harass - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Hubbard homeowner makes federal case out of horn honking 'harassment'

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HUBBARD, Ohio -

A Hubbard man has filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the city of Hubbard, its police chief and Trumbull County claiming they have done nothing to stop what he contends has been a nine year campaign of what he describes as tyranny, intimidation, terrorism, and retaliation against him and his wife.

Garrick Krlich filed the suit in U.S. District Court in Youngstown on Thursday, seeking more than $75,000 in damages, alleging that his constitutional right to equal protection under the law has been violated.

The couple has been making news headlines for several years, complaining that people have been driving by their home at the corner of East Liberty and Creed Streets, honking their car horns and revving their engines in order to harass them.

Krlich says he believes he is being targeted because in 2007 he refused to withdraw an auction bid on some property that had been owned by the aunt of then Hubbard Fire Chief John Clemente.

Following Krlich’s refusal to withdraw his bid for the property, Krlich claims members of the Clemente family, friends, and coworkers ,began the alleged horn honking campaign which Krlich contends continues to this day.

The couple has installed video and audio recording equipment to record the alleged horn-blowing incidents.

Krlich alleges in the suit that those blowing their car horns over the years have included the Hubbard Police Chief’s son and brother, City of Hubbard Councilmen, members of the Hubbard Police Department, City of Hubbard Firemen, fire men from surrounding municipalities, a Hubbard Zoning Township Official, Trumbull County school buses, Hubbard Local School District buses, and the son and sister of a Girard Municipal Court Judge.

In the lawsuit, Krlich say there have been several hundred of these incidents happening at all hours of the day and night, and he has reported them to Hubbard police.

He says the department has failed and refused to accept many of his reports.

On at least one occasion, alleges Krlich, Trumbull’s 9-1-1 Center refused to take his call, telling him to contact the Police Department and then hanging up on him.

Now he says that both the Hubbard Police Department and Trumbull 9-1-1 Center are requiring him, to follow a specific “protocol” prior to contacting the police.

Krlich contends that neither the Hubbard Police Department, nor Trumbull 9-1-1 require other callers to follow that protocol, saying the situation violates his constitutional right to equal protection under the law.

Hubbard Police Chief James Taafe is named as a defendant because Krlich says he responsible for supervising officers and creating and enforcing his department's policies,

In 2011, four alleged horn blowers were hauled into court for violating a protection order that Krlich had obtained at the time.

A year later, Krlich took matters into his own hands by creating a website and renting two billboards to publicize his complaints.

None of the defendants named in the suit had filed a response as of Thursday evening.

Krlich is asking for a trial by jury.

You can see a copy of the lawsuit here.

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