A Kiwi man at the centre of war between residents of an Australian suburb was reportedly ruthlessly bullied and hospitalised after a story about his neighbourly disagreements was broadcast.
On Monday, A Current Affair (ACA) reported on Taupo-man Rob Rakei and his daughters' behaviour towards their neighbours, Margaret Stokes and her daughter Rachel, in the Melbourne suburb of Blackburn.
Footage captured by Rachel shows a foul-mouthed tirade from a female member of the household, including saying she would "smash" her.
"I would not be surprised if they killed us," Margaret said.
"I can't let my dog out just to be out in the backyard, I can't garden, I can't do anything."
In the A Current Affair story, reporter Sam Cucchiara approaches the Rakeis' house. Rob heads off inside before his daughters and another youth drench Cucchiara with a hose. The Rakei family deny doing anything wrong and tell the reporter there are two sides to the story.
The footage has since gone viral, and according to a report from NZME, lead Rakei's family to receive death threats.
"[A Current Affair] hounded them, hanging round almost stalking them for days with cameras. I myself and certain members of family [have] received death threats [and their] address been shared numerous times on Facebook," Tracy Allan, Rakei's daughters' mother, told NZME.
Allan said Rakei had suffered two brain bleeds since the story aired and was released from hospital on Wednesday.
According to Allan, disagreements between the neighbours started when one of her daughters went to retrieve a ball from the neighbour's property. She was then allegedly struck in the back with a pickaxe.
Since the story aired, Stokes and her daughter have been offered new public housing.
"Anti-social behaviour in our public housing properties is not on and will not be tolerated," the Department of Health and Human Services said.