When Dylan Fouillard and Madalyn Weatherill moved into their home in Pincher Creek, Alta., two years ago, they say the issues with their neighbours started off as typical disputes.
“The sprinkler in our yard — some of the wind’s blowing the water over the fence and getting it in their yard, so you’d go turn the pressure down,” Fouillard said.
“I installed a motion light above the driveway and he (our neighbour) called me at about 10 p.m., stating that the light was shining on his house… lots of other small things.”
But last month, it became more serious.
Fouillard said footage on his security camera shows his neighbours acting in what he calls a suspicious manner.
“I saw her leaning over the fence and screwing around with the rigid downpipe into my rain barrel, trying to move it over,” Fouillard said.
The footage appears to show a woman twisting the lid off a bottle, before approaching Foulliard’s rain barrel.
Fouillard said he went to confront his neighbours after the incident. That’s when he alleges things became physical and that his neighbour grabbed his neck.
RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Tammy Keibel confirmed two people have now been charged in connection with the disputes.
“Barb Patterson of Pincher Creek has been charged with mischief in relation to the tampering allegation and Louis Patterson has been charged with assault of the victim involved,” Keibel said.
Repeated calls to the Pattersons for comment went unanswered. The two are scheduled to appear in court on Aug. 17.
Fouillard and Weatherill said they had the water tested and found glyphosate, which is often found in weed killers.
They said they are concerned about Weatherill’s two-year-old sister Jayden and their dog Juno.
“We’ve been feeding our dog, feeding our garden, watering the lawn. (Jayden’s) been playing… and swimming. She used the low-pressure hose to fill up her swimming pool and spray herself down,” Fouillard said.
Weatherill said Jayden has had some reactions that they originally thought were from allergies.
“She’s been getting rashes and painful eyes,” Weatherill said. “Her eyes were red underneath — burning. We couldn’t figure out what was wrong.”
Fouillard said Juno has been vomiting and they took her to the vet as soon as they saw the security camera footage.
“She’d been drinking the water that overflows from the rain barrel into her dog dish,” Fouillard said.
“They took blood samples and they came back with poor results, suggesting her body’s attacking her pancreas, and that’s a symptom of RoundUp and glycol poisoning.”
Fouillard is concerned the charges against his neighbours aren’t strong enough.
“They’re well-aware the dog drinks out of this water,” he said. “They see the hose from their window, how it leads from the children’s toys to the swimming pool.
“It was no mistake.”
Keibel said the outcome of the investigation currently supports the elements of mischief.
“The allegation is that Barb Patterson has interfered with the lawful enjoyment of property,” Keibel said.
“Relative to the level of evidence obtained, that is the charge that has been deemed most appropriate in this circumstance.”