Stonington borough couple sues next-door neighbors, claiming they're spying on them

Stonington -- A borough couple is suing their neighbors in federal court, alleging they have used the windows and porches of their newly enlarged home to “launch a full scale threatening attack” on their neighbors by continuously spying on them.

Dave and Reba Williams also allege that their Water Street neighbors, Randall and Elizabeth Bean and their two adult sons, Christopher and Matthew, may also be disseminating their recordings and photographs electronically and in other ways.

They allege the two Bean sons have undertaken the surveillance in an “deliberate, calculated effort to harass them.''

In a court filing, the Beans’ attorney said her clients “vehemently deny” the allegations. The attorney, Nuala Droney, could not be reached for comment Monday.

The suit does not offer any reason for the alleged harassment but the Williamses also charge that the Beans have been trying to make numerous individuals think they are close friends with the Williams family and socialize with them. They further allege the Beans once told some neighbors that the Williamses invited them to “one of their soirees,” a claim they said was fabricated by Randall Bean.

The Williamses, who are in their 80s and residents of Greenwich, have a summer home at 24 Water St. that is appraised by the town at $1.7 million. They bought the home in 2007.

The Beans, who live in Boston, have a summer home at 28 Water St. that they bought in 2014 and is appraised by the town at $1.4 million. Both homes are on Stonington Harbor.

According to their attorney’s court filing, Randall Bean is the chief executive officer of NewVantage Partners in Boston while until June, Elizabeth Bean was the chief administrative officer for anesthesia, critical care and pain medicine at the Harvard Medical Faculty Physicians and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. Their sons are 22 and 25 and live in Boston.

In their suit, which seeks monetary damages and injunction barring the Beans from conducting surveillance on them, the Williamses say that soon after the Beans bought their home in 2015, the Beans began a dramatic expansion which was opposed by neighbors but approved by the borough. The Williamses point out that 19 windows and three balconies overlook their home and garden while the other side of the Bean house has just 10 windows. They charge that the Beans “brazenly” admitted to residents that the express purpose of the expansion was to provide them with close up views of the Williamses’ home as well as “direct views of the Williams(es)) themselves in the privacy of their own home.”

The Williamses say they were not at their home from September 2015 to May 2016 but when they returned one or both of the Bean sons “launched a full scale threatening attack against the Williams(es) by using the significantly enlarged and heightened Bean house to menacingly surveil and spy on the Williams(es) and their guests ...”

The Williams(es) say the situation has caused them to fear for their safety and the Beans have continued the surveillance despite being asked to stop. On July 20, they allege one or more of the Bean brothers spied and eavesdropped on Williamses and their guests conversation from one of the balconies.

In a effort to mitigate the damages, the Williamses said they retained a team of specialized landscapers and other professionals to design and install 30 10-foot tall trees and two large trellises along their property line to thwart the Beans' alleged surveillance. The cost was $34,000.

They allege the Beans activities have caused them to suffer severe emotional and mental damages and might have resulted in physical harm to them.

The Williamses are being represented by the same firm, Geraghty and Bonnano, that represents the Front Street couple suing the town over the Town Dock dog park.

j.wojtas@theday.com

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