Marc Peeples of Detroit has filed a lawsuit against three women, alleging they made false accusations about him to the police to keep him away from an urban garden on the city’s east side.
Peeples said he was working in the community garden when Deborah Nash, Jennifer Moore and Martha Callahan made unjust police calls. They allegedly told Detroit police that Peeples had stolen from homes near the park and threatened to burn down their houses and kill them in March 2018.
A couples of months later, when Peeples was in Hunt Park teaching students about gardening, one of the women called the police and falsely accused him of being a convicted pedophile.
Their allegations resulted in Peeples being charged with three counts of stalking and barred him from the park.
Peeples said he was trying to give back to his old neighborhood by planting a garden in Hunt Park.
“I guess it was gardening while black,” Peeples said. “They call the police on me every time they see me at the park. They were trying to paint me as a criminal.”
Nash told the New York Times in October that she called the police because Peeples was damaging property.
“I am not a racist. I was all for the garden and even helped with supplies at first, but he threatened me several times, in person to my face, that I needed to leave my neighborhood or I would be put out one way or another,” she said. “I called the police because he was destroying property in the neighborhood and painting graffiti. No one had the right to paint park trees.”
Peeples seek $300,000 from the lawsuit, in addition to court and attorney fees.