A Frederick man shattered his neighbors’ window while yelling and threatening them and later exposed himself to police when they arrived to handle the confrontation, according to court records.
Hitesh Dhirubahai Patel, 45, appeared to be intoxicated and initially refused to exit his home when city police arrived in the 1600 block of Tydings Park Road on Saturday afternoon for calls that Patel had been harassing his neighbors, who have temporary peace orders issued against him, according to court documents. Patel repeatedly taunted police from inside his home, making obscene gestures to them and at one point exposing himself to officers through a window, the documents state. Patel eventually complied with police and was taken to an area hospital for an evaluation.
Further investigation revealed Patel has a history of targeting his neighbors, according to the documents, which indicate police had been out to his residence earlier that same day to serve Patel with a criminal summons ordering him to appear in court for violating protective orders previously put in place against him by his neighbors.
Since the beginning of the year, Patel has been charged twice with violating protective orders, court records state. He was also charged with one count each of making a threat of mass violence and threatening to commit arson in February when he threatened to blow up a city police officer’s home while turning himself in for charges that he violated a protective order, the records and previous stories published in The Frederick News-Post indicate.
Patel pleaded guilty to both protective order cases as well as the February case involving the threats made against a police officer, but an online search of court records did not reveal what sentences or terms Patel received in each case.
Later Saturday, Patel walked onto his neighbor’s property in violation of the orders placed against him and began spraying water from a hose over the front of the neighbors’ home, the documents state. Patel then began pounding on one of the windows while shouting and using racist slurs against the occupants of the home, the documents stated.
The couple who owns the home next to Patel, Josè and Erika Cruz, were inside with several other relatives when they heard the glass of the window break and began to fear Patel was forcing his way inside, according to the documents.
Patel retreated back to his home by the time the police arrived, but for the Cruz family, the repeated confrontations they have had with Patel over the last year have taken their toll. While both Josè and Erika said they recognize Patel likely needs some form of professional help or medication, they are frustrated with what they perceive as the ineffectiveness of the protective and peace order process.
“Every time he does something either against us or the law, he immediately claims that he’s sick in the head, or he is bipolar, and they take him to the hospital,” Josè Cruz said when reached for comment Tuesday.
Erika Cruz expressed her concern that one day Patel would seriously hurt either himself or someone else, potentially herself or a loved one. The couple has expressed interest in staying involved in the case in the hopes that a better outcome can be reached.
“There’s got to be a solution. My pain, my fear and the anxiety that I’m living through right now, it can’t all be for nothing. It just can’t, I won’t let it,” Erika Cruz said.
As a result of Saturday’s confrontation, Patel was charged with two counts of failing to comply with the terms of a peace order, three counts of harassment and one count each of the malicious destruction of property less than $1,000, indecent exposure, disorderly conduct and causing a public disturbance while intoxicated.
Patel was denied bail during a hearing before a District Court judge Monday afternoon and remained in the Frederick County Adult Detention Center ahead of his next court appearance, according to an online search of court records.