A woman got the shock of her life when she woke up to find a stranger in her bedroom, yelling at her to wake up because her grass was too long.
Erica Masters was asleep when Columbia County Code Compliance Officer Jimmy Vowell entered her Martinez, Georgia, home without permission to serve a violation notice for her overgrown lawn.
After knocking on the woman’s door a few times, Vowell let himself and made his way into her bedroom, which was captured on surveillance video.
‘He let himself in and actually came through the house and into my bedroom. And yelled at me to wake me up, to let me know that I needed to come back outside and sign the violation notice,’ Masters told WJBF.COM.
‘I woke up, I didn’t have my glasses on or my contacts in and all I see is this big burly figure standing in my doorway. A big, huge guy with a grey shirt. It scared the mess out of me.’
Masters has now pressed charges against Vowell and the county. ‘I’m really just not comfortable with where I am right now, so I’ve decided to press charges. At least to put my mind at ease. And to hopefully help keep other Columbia County citizens a little bit safer as well.’ she said.
But Vowell, who has been placed on administrative leave, will not face criminal charges, it has been revealed.
It is not yet known whether he will return to work.
Code Compliance Officers cannot enter homes without permission unless there are extenuating circumstances, and Masters feels her privacy has been violated.
Vowell had been serving an order because Masters’ grass was longer than 12 inches, which the woman says she will change.
‘I do understand that my yard needs to be cut. I understand that. I have no problem with that. I understand them having to serve a violation notice, but the way they handled it was completely unacceptable,’ she said.
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