Saturday, June 14, 2008

Woman Complains to Police of Criminal Harassment by Carnegie Coffee Seller, Devor

We heard this from Bill and one other person but we haven’t confirmed it yet. A Carnegie member is lodging a formal complaint of criminal harassment against Devor, the chronic abuser in the Carnegie Center Senior’s Lounge. We know that she called police this afternoon. But we are not clear on whether a formal report was written up yet. Her goal, we are told, is to start a file so that she can have every incident added to it and eventually get charges laid or at least get a no contact order.

The story we are getting second and third hand is that Devor has had it in for this woman for a long time. He told her that he didn’t want her back in the Senior’s Lounge after Board member Rachel Davis raised the issue of him playing the television at deafening levels – way beyond the safe level of 90 decibels – at a Board meeting. He is at least partially deaf and likes to crank up the television at about three times the WorkSafe level for a normal person. The Seniors Lounge is a multi-purpose room with people going in there to use the Vancouver Public Library computers and coming out with their ears ringing from the blazing gun fire and cussing, etc. from his DVDs. Anyway, we were told a few months ago, that this woman couldn’t even buy a coffee at the Senior’s Lounge take-out wicket without this guy literally yelling in her face about how he didn’t want her back because she was causing him trouble.

This woman had actually not been the one who asked Davis to raise the issue of sound levels at a Board meeting, although she and other Carnegie members expressed relief that Davis had raised the issue. But this woman appears to be the one Devor blames.

Now, every time this woman goes into the Senior’s Lounge, Devor cranks up the volume to deafening levels and looks right at her and tells her that if she doesn’t like it, she can "Go! Go!". (He speaks pigeon English.) He often, according to what we have learned from witnesses over the past year, takes it upon himself to evict her from a City facility: "You go! No come back!". She stopped going to the Seniors Lounge for months, but this week she went in a few times because she needed to use the computers and the third floor computer room is crawling with bed bugs. (Bed bugs are even crawling out of the CPUs.)

Today, we are told that Devor got angry with this woman, telling her that she had used the wrong wall clock when writing down her computer start time. He operates two wall clocks, a few minutes apart for some reason. Don’t ask us why. People who sign in on one clock, are then yelled at and told their time is "out" based on the other clock. This man is from Croatia and something happened to him there that we can only speculate about.

Anyway, if this woman speaks up about anything in the Senior’s Lounge, Devor allegedly incites the men in the room – many of whom have done jail time for violent crimes – to become very aggressive toward her. She told Devor today -- and this was confirmed by a witness who was standing at the take-out window -- that he should talk to her directly instead of calling on the other men in the room to deal with her. Usually he starts – we have heard this story so many times -- by yelling insulting comments at her, then calling on the whole room of guys to deal with her, making it impossible for the guys to keep watching their television show. And he invariably tells the guys that if they don’t deal with her, their television show will be turned off. “Do you want me to turn off television?” he taunts them in his Croatian accent and pigeon English. (He has been in Canada for a reported 35 years and this is as the only complete sentence he seems to know.) He gets the guys riled up. And then, if they only yell at her a bit, he will go to them one by one and say things individually in their ears, apparently encouraging them to have a go at her.

Today she apparently gave Devor what wanted. She yelled back at him, even though she’s not known for yelling or blowing up at people at Carnegie. She was screaming at him that she was fed up with his abuse. “Find another woman to abuse!!!”, she told him. He was telling her to "Get out!!" etc. etc. This is all happening on your tax dollars by the way.

This is also all happening on the watch of Carnegie Director, Ethel Whitty. It's as if Whitty has put yellow tape around the cesspool of the Senior's Lounge and never ventures down to actually deal with what goes on. Whitty has been seen at the Senior's Loung only once since she started working at Carnegie a year and a half ago; she was seen standing outside the Lounge at the take-out window buying herself a tea.

It is noteworthy that Whitty went on CBC Radio a few months ago and accused a non-violent man, Bill Simpson, of being a WorkSafe issue at Carnegie, as a means of covering her ass and that of her boss Jacquie Forbes-Roberts when they were criticized for banning Simpson from the building two weeks after he was elected to the Board. There is no question that Whitty lied outright to the public while on the radio, as the letter Forbes-Roberts sent to Simpson made no mention of a WorkSafe issue. Forbes-Roberts stated in the letter that Simpson was banned from Carnegie because he had operated a website which "features links" to a blog which criticizes Carnegie staff. Carnegie members, both those who like and dislike Simpson, consistently say that he was never violent, never physically aggressive, never threatening. When there is a real risk from an abuser in the basement at Carnegie, costing taxpayers money on a regular basis as security guards are constantly having to sprint to the basement to break up fights because Devor has launched into a power-tripping rage at yet another member. What has become obvious is that Whitty cares little about safety in the building. She will falsely blame a man for being a safety risk when in fact he was nothing but a political critic, but she will do nothing about a real safety risk. (Whitty has performed better on the issue of hearing damage in the Seniors Lounge. Some of the coffee sellers do now keep the sound lower, we are told. But Devor is not one of them and he seems to have more shifts than anyone else.)

From what we’re hearing, Devor's abuse will now be a police matter. There is little doubt that his constant targeting of this woman, yelling at her, threatening, inciting anger and hostility toward her, has reached the level of criminal harassment.

One member said, "I hope she gets the f*cker deported." Most members don't say much though, they only smile.