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'Bitter' Red Deer Senior Convicted Of Bullying Neighbours

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A man known as the nightmare of Scott Street was dragged into a Red Deer, Alta. courtroom this week and found guilty of being a neighbourhood bully.

“[He] would scream profanities at the dog and us over the fence — to the point where we couldn’t even sit in the backyard in our new house, our first house,” neighbour Amanda Walsh told Global News.

“One night we had to put tarps up because he stood on his step and stared at us over the fence.”

A judge slapped Robert Charlton — a 78-year-old nicknamed by area residents as “Bitter Bob” — with a $500 fine for violating an unique section of a community bylaw.

What got the neighbourhood “terror” convicted was “yelling and screaming” at children riding bikes outside his house, according to the Red Deer Advocate.

The community outlet reports approximately 20 people showed up to the city’s traffic court to hear the judge’s decision.

Red Deer: No bullying others in public

Charlton was convicted under the section of the Red Deer community standards bylaw that prohibits people from bullying “any person in any public place," and for participating or encouraging verbal abuse against another in public.

"I’ve never seen people tell so many lies in my life."

Though the judge only heard four neighbours’ testimonies, locals say the list of grievances includes Charlton's incessant calls to police and the occasional revenge pranks involving cat feces.

Area parents also claim their children had grown fearful of the senior.

Despite being brought to court for being unneighbourly, Charlton suggests he’s not going to stop waving his cane at others any time soon.

I’ve never seen people tell so many lies in my life,” he told the Red Deer Advocate.

This kind of anti-bullying bylaw isn’t unique to Red Deer. Eight other municipalities across Alberta have similar measures in place.

In Edmonton, bullies can be fined if they are found guilty of breaching a “public behaviours” section of a bylaw protecting people from feeling harassed in a public place.

Another bylaw in Grande Prairie even specifically prohibits a person from bullying another in a public space “or through written or electronic communication.”

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