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Lesley Pulman

Lesley Pulman

When the family from hell moved into her street, Lesley Pulman single-handedly took on the bullies and won.

 

Lesley's ordeal began in 2001 when, overnight, her pleasant street in Manchester turned into a drop-in centre for yobs. "They had no respect for anybody or anything," she says, "and didn't fear anyone, including the police."

The group taunted the community claiming, "The street is ours now", and property agents told residents they would not be able to give away their homes.

"We were in shock at the speed with which it happened," says Lesley. "Everything was dictated by them."

The gang threw bricks and stones at people's homes, and carried knives and baseball bats, committing random acts of violence to keep the residents in a perpetual state of fear.

Lesley, 56, was threatened and verbally abused on a daily basis. "It was urban terrorism," she says. "People were too frightened to walk down the street. The group were confident no-one would do anything."

But when the thugs severely beat up a family as they returned home, Lesley knew something had to be done.

Multiple sclerosis sufferer Lesley turned to the council. They advised her about ASBOs - Anti-Social Behaviour Orders - which could be brought against the troublemakers if enough evidence could be collated.

Lesley installed a video camera and began recording the thuggish behaviour and drug dealing. She encouraged five neighbours to keep incident diaries and compiled a dossier of evidence over seven months.

When a hearing was finally secured, Lesley was the only one of the petrified residents prepared to stand up in court and give evidence, despite receiving death threats.

Lesley successfully secured ASBOs against the ringleaders and overnight split up the group.

"It empowered the community," she says. "You could see the physical difference immediately."

Lesley now works as a link between council case workers and the police, offering witnesses support. "Being a witness in an ASBO is very personal," she says. "You are close to the perpetrator and see them on a daily basis."

Lesley has also since set up the Witness Support Fund charity which offers financial assistance to those suffering from anti-social neighbours.

"The biggest fear is fear itself," she says. "Every scumbag in Manchester knows where I live, but I'm entitled to live in peace." WHEN the family from hell moved into her street, Lesley Pulman single-handedly took on the bullies and won.

Lesley's ordeal began in 2001 when, overnight, her pleasant street in Manchester turned into a drop-in centre for yobs. "They had no respect for anybody or anything," she says, "and didn't fear anyone, including the police."

The group taunted the community claiming, "The street is ours now", and property agents told residents they would not be able to give away their homes.

"We were in shock at the speed with which it happened," says Lesley. "Everything was dictated by them."

The gang threw bricks and stones at people's homes, and carried knives and baseball bats, committing random acts of violence to keep the residents in a perpetual state of fear.

Lesley, 56, was threatened and verbally abused on a daily basis. "It was urban terrorism," she says. "People were too frightened to walk down the street. The group were confident no-one would do anything."

But when the thugs severely beat up a family as they returned home, Lesley knew something had to be done.

Multiple sclerosis sufferer Lesley turned to the council. They advised her about ASBOs - Anti-Social Behaviour Orders - which could be brought against the troublemakers if enough evidence could be collated.

Lesley installed a video camera and began recording the thuggish behaviour and drug dealing. She encouraged five neighbours to keep incident diaries and compiled a dossier of evidence over seven months.

When a hearing was finally secured, Lesley was the only one of the petrified residents prepared to stand up in court and give evidence, despite receiving death threats.

Lesley successfully secured ASBOs against the ringleaders and overnight split up the group.

"It empowered the community," she says. "You could see the physical difference immediately."

Lesley now works as a link between council case workers and the police, offering witnesses support. "Being a witness in an ASBO is very personal," she says. "You are close to the perpetrator and see them on a daily basis."

Lesley has also since set up the Witness Support Fund charity which offers financial assistance to those suffering from anti-social neighbours.

"The biggest fear is fear itself," she says. "Every scumbag in Manchester knows where I live, but I'm entitled to live in peace."