Woman says neighbor attacked her on her lanai

Posted at 10:17 PM, Jun 26, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-27 07:00:41-04

A North Fort Myers man was arrested after Lee County Deputies say he assaulted the woman who live across the street from him.

John Petterson, 58, is facing burglary and battery charges.

People living in his neighborhood said he is a nightmare neighbor.

Debbie Johnson, the woman he assaulted, said she was coming back from a walk with her dog when the incident began. Petterson took a picture of her on his phone.

"So I said 'What the hell are you doing?' He says 'None of your business.' And I said 'What I do with my dog is none of your business,'" Johnson said.

Once she got inside her lanai, she said Petterson came back to argue.  "When he got to my driveway, I said 'Do not step one more foot in my driveway or I'll call the cops,'"  Johnson said.

She said Petterson didn't listen and opened the door into her lanai.

"He grabbed me by my throat and my arm and dragged me," Johnson said. "I was fighting him and he had me by the neck and my arm."

She said the struggle knocked down her chair and moved her table on her lanai, shattered her phone screen, and left her with scrapes and bruises.

"He just looked at me and said 'If this happens again I'll kill you,'" Johnson.

She said Petterson let her go and she called 911. Petterson told deputies he's having an ongoing issue with Johnson because her dog goes to the bathroom near his property and she doesn't clean it up. Johnson said that's not true and her dog never goes on his property.

Petterson is behind bars with no bond, and Johnson said she hopes he stays locked up for good.

"Because he already said when he gets out, he will finish what he started, and he will finish it," Johnson said.