A Titahi Bay family are at their wits’ end after trying to deter teenage girls from pursuing their intellectually disabled son for money.
The Kowalewski family has had three teens trespassed, and installed a security camera with alarm at their home, but are still bothered by night-time visitors knocking on the bedroom window of the 57-year-old man, who is cared for by IHC New Zealand and lives with his elderly mother.
On April 4, teens visited five times and broke a burglar alarm, prompting the man’s brother, Vigel Kowalewski, to post security footage of the incident to a community Facebook page in an attempt to deter the teens, and stop any chance of the behaviour escalating.
He described his brother as kind and generous, well-known in the community for helping people with their gardens.
READ MORE: * Security camera catches teenagers harassing elderly woman in her home * Community has a say on youth crime * Youth crime spree continues to frustrate police * Drop in child crime reflects better collaboration in youth justice
“He talks to people in the bay and these kids can see this, and started to ask him for a dollar or two.
“We think these kids followed him home one day and have been coming around every day asking for money from 4pm on to 9 and 10pm.”
He took his brother to a local shopping mall where girls came and asked him for money, so he got his brother to identify them, and later showed police their Facebook profiles.
Three were trespassed. “But the problem did not go away. The same kids, and more, started to come round again.
“This time, my mum was in the garden and was approached by a number of girls demanding $40, which she said my brother owed her.
“My mother told them to get lost and they ran off.”
He said his mother has been in contact with police about the problem for more than two years.
The family have installed a lock on their garage after someone tried to take off with a mobility scooter, a lock on their power box after someone kept flicking the lights off, a loud alarm, and a security camera.
The footage from April 4, viewed more than 330,000 times on social media, shows a pair of hooded girls twice walking up the family’s driveway and knocking on the man’s window before jumping a back fence.
Kowalewski warned the girls not to come again, or more footage would be shared.
Porirua Mayor Mike Tana said he knew the family and wanted to offer his support, along with helping the girls to change their behaviour.
Mana MP Kris Faafoi had also been in touch with the family, and planned to follow up with police.
In a written statement, Kapiti-Mana police said they were aware of a number of incidents at a “particular residential property” and knew who was responsible.
“The people involved will be dealt with by police Youth Aid staff.”