Former Shrewsbury rooster owner cries fowl at police citation
Shrewsbury Township neighbors who complained about a man’s rooster rousing them were in for a rude awakening if they thought reveille would stop when the bird flew the coop.
State police have cited Nadim Jaouni with disorderly conduct for allegedly playing a recording of a rooster via speaker system in his neighborhood about 1:30 a.m. Friday, Aug. 4.
At some point that morning, troopers were called and responded to the 15000 block of Country Club Road, police said.
"When troopers arrived on scene, the recording of a rooster was still playing at a very loud level," said Trooper Brent Miller, a state police spokesman. "The suspect was causing a disturbance to the entire community."
But Jaouni, 56, who goes by Dean, told The York Dispatch he intends to fight the summary citation in district court.
Going to court: He said it was his teenage son who played the recording, that it wasn't as loud as police allege, that it wasn't particularly early in the morning and that it was played over a laptop computer, not a speaker system.
"I'm defending this all the way," he said. His summary trial is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 6, according to court records.
The playing of the recorded rooster call was in response to Jaouni having to get rid of a rooster he kept at his home, which he said he rents from his adopted aunt and uncle.
He lives in an area zoned agricultural, but the township prohibits people living in agricultural zones from keeping roosters if their property is less than 3 acres, according to Shrewsbury Township Manager Todd Zeigler. Keeping up to 10 chickens is permissible, he said.
Zeigler said the township sent Jaouni a violation notice June 18 after receiving complaints about the rooster. Jaouni was informed that keeping the rooster violated Shrewsbury Township codes, Zeigler said.
Jaouni said he eventually found a new home for the rooster.
'Save the rooster': Spray-painted signs appeared in Jaouni's yard after he received the violation that read "save the rooster," according to Zeigler.
Those signs were gone as of Thursday, Aug. 10, but on that day there was a spray-painted sign in Jaouni's yard that read "Think KARMA."
Jaouni, who is of Middle Eastern descent, said he believes racism is at the heart of issue that some neighbors have with him.
"I've been in this country for 43 years — I'm an injured veteran," he said. "Some neighbors don't want me here. They don't let us live in peace."
He said he has no problem with most of his neighbors and that one neighbor in particular is the one doing most of the complaining.
"Live and let live, for crying out loud," Jaouni said. "Why do we have to be enemies?"
Ducks prompt gunfire: That neighbor fired a gun in response to Jaouni's ducks wandering onto the man's property, prompting Jaouni to call state police, he said.
He said a trooper investigated and told him the neighbor was shooting birdshot and fired a warning shot to scare the ducks away from his yard.
"The trooper told me we don't fit in," Jaouni claimed. "I've never felt so degraded in my life, and I'm going to tell it to the judge."
He said he's found a new home for the ducks.
Zeigler said Shrewsbury Township also sent Jaouni letters and violation notices for other issues as well.
On June 12, a violation notice was sent because Jaouni was operating a small-engine repair business on the property, according to Zeigler.
Other violations; On June 21, violation notices were sent because Jaouni was violating general township codes regarding overgrown vegetation and the accumulation of rubbish, according to the township manager.
Also, he has not yet had his final inspection for his septic system, Zeigler said.
Zeigler said that when Jaouni first moved to the property, the home there had no indoor plumbing, so he was living in a travel trailer behind the house. Shrewsbury Township prohibits people from living in such trailers on residential properties for more than 14 days, he said.
Also, the township's sewage-enforcement officer investigated reports of raw sewage being dumped on the ground, according to Zeigler, who said the house still doesn't have a kitchen in it.
'Not sewage': Jaouni said it wasn't raw sewage, it was gray water, which isn't illegal. He also said he's been waiting for a building permit to start work on a kitchen.
He said part of his deal with the property owners is that he fix up the house and property.
But Jaouni said he has decided to move and will vacate the property in about three weeks.
The property is generally run down, with a number of riding mowers lined up outside, unfinished work on the house and weeds growing in areas.
The Dover-area husband and wife who own the property could not be reached for comment.
— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at email@example.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.