Neighbourhood rallies to block out racist noises blaring out of home to target Black resident

By Arpan Rai

A local community rallied together to protest a racial attack against a Black family in Virginia Beach by a neighbour who targeted them with monkey sounds, banjo music and racist slurs for months.

The loud music mocking the family’s race initially began when Jannique Martinez’s family moved into their house in Virginia’s Salem Lakes Cul-de-sac a few years ago.

Annoyed by the racist jibes, the neighbourhood community gathered and held a support rally  for the family. The united act forced the neighbour to stop, allowing the area to be quieter, according to reports.

A neighbour who participated in the rally to show disapproval said they wanted peace. “We currently have some peace, and our neighbours do not have to endure the racial slurs directed at them,” said Mr Martinez’s neighbour Nancy Eleftheratos.

“The support from the community has been amazing. We want nothing more to live in our homes in peace. Kids running around doing their thing without the nonsense! It ain’t over yet! But it’s a start!” Ms Eleftheratos said.

An exasperated Ms Martinez had complained about the racist attack last month on her Facebook. “My hateful neighbour plays this along with the monkey noises towards me and my family, EVERY SINGLE DAY!!" she had said in the post.

The attacks have had a terrifying effect on her seven-year-old son who asked her about a racist slur Black families often encounter, according to a report.

However, several complaints raised in the last few months with the Virginia Beach police department did not invoke a criminal action against the offending neighbour.

“As appalling and offensive as the neighbour’s behaviours are, the city attorney and Virginia magistrates have separately determined that the actions reported thus far did not rise to a level that Virginia law defines as criminal behaviour,” the police department said in a tweet.

It added that the police department has had no authority to intervene and warrants were not supported.

“We will closely monitor the situation, investigate complaints and, within the limits of the law, help this family with this most unpleasant situation,” the statement read.

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