Manure dumped near wedding spot
EXETER, R.I. (WJAR) —
An Exeter man claims his neighbor dumped a large pile of manure close to where their properties meet Friday afternoon.
Gerald Zarrella is marketing the land he owns off Narrow Lane in Exeter as Gerald's Farm.
He's currently in the middle of a legal battle with the town of Exeter regarding whether or not he's allowed to host commercial events on the property. A court memo provided to NBC 10 News indicates Zarrella has been cleared to host two weddings in September while the legal process plays out.
According to Zarrella, some neighbors haven't been happy with his intention to develop the land over the last few years. He believes Friday's incident is a form of retaliation.
"If there was a pair of boxing gloves here and he was willing, let’s go. That's how furious I am. That is ripe, raw, chicken waste," said Zarrella.
The manure pile is located just feet away from where a wedding is scheduled to be held Saturday.
The smell is in the area where people will eat. Other neighbors further away said the smell is already bothering them.
"The way the wind travels it permeates all the way through there. You can feel it burning in the nostrils," said Steve Sheally.
State police and environmental police were called in to investigate Friday evening.
Investigators said even though Zarrella's neighbor had the manure dumped on his own property he'll face some sort of civil violation. Officials weren't sure what exactly the violation is for and what the penalties associated with it are.
Officials determined no criminal act took place and as a result they said they can't force the man to remove the manure pile before Saturday's wedding.
"These people have a right to have a beautiful wedding. It's going to happen, but it's not nice what he has done," said Zarrella.
Nearly 200 guests are expected to attend the wedding on Zarrella's property.
NBC 10 News attempted to speak with the man accused of dumping the manure intentionally, but no one answered the door. It's unclear if anyone was home at the time.