Lindy Weilgart called the vandalism of her neighbours’ half-built Herring Cove home “a terrible, terrible act” yesterday after her son was released on bail for charges related to the incident.
“My heart goes out to the Dempseys,” Weilgart told reporters yesterday. “This is a terrible, terrible act.”
Benjamin Weilgart-Whitehead, 21, was arraigned yesterday in Halifax provincial court on charges of mischief over $5,000 and breaking and entering into Tom and Corrinne Dempsey’s home under construction at 1594 John Brackett Dr. on Saturday.
The Dempseys are involved in a bitter legal dispute with their neighbours Lindy Weilgart and Hal Whitehouse, both renowned whale researchers at Dalhousie University, over where on the lot they can construct the home.
A Supreme Court of Nova Scotia justice recently dismissed an appeal launched by the Weilgart and Whitehouse couple to overturn a municipal decision that allowed the Dempsey home to be built closer than normal to their property line.
On Saturday, the Dempseys awoke to find someone had smashed nearly all the windows and taken an axe to the wiring, ductwork and plumbing in their future home. A can of liquid adhesive primer had been poured into a shop vacuum, chainsaw, furnace, locksets, pipes and an air compressor.
Weilgart-Whitehead, who had been remanded since his arrest Saturday, appeared calm and clean cut in court, sitting with his hands folded in his lap while the judge ordered a list of conditions. He is to reside at 9 Stonewall Rd. in Herring Cove and has to stay away from seven places in the community, including the local school, fire hall, church and the Dempseys’ properties. He is not to possess any weapon or contact any of the Dempseys.
His mother signed a $2,000 recognizance for his release.
The Dempseys said yesterday they’re relieved someone was charged. “But we’re not happy — not by a long shot,” Corrinne Dempsey said.