MESA, Ariz. — A former Mesa city councilman is caught on camera accosting people he says are trespassing on his property.
The video has gone viral, being viewed more than 76,000 times
The trail in question is the Hawes Loop Trail in Las Sendas.
“He’s jumping over the fence. He’s yelling at people. He says they’re threatening him. He says they’re trespassing,” said Shawn Stenmark, who lives in the area.
Stenmark is referring to former Mesa city councilman Bill Jaffa and his wife, who are seen in the videos.
The Jaffas have never confronted Stenmark, but he knows people who have been.
“It’s not just one time … If you stay on one part he’s fine, but if you deviate, he attacks people, not physically, but verbally," said Stenmark.
12 News reached out to Jaffa to ask him and his wife to clarify where they have seen people crossing. But so far, he has not responded.
A spokesperson for the City of Mesa said the trail is owned by the city.
In a statement, the spokesperson said the city did reroute a portion of it about a month ago.
In July, the City rerouted a portion of the Hawes Loop Trail out of an abundance of caution concerning a potential drop-off next to the trail and directly above the Jaffa’s property, which could cause injury to bikers and hikers. This new part of the trail was never on Mr. Jaffa’s property. In fact, it shifted the trail farther away from his property. The City of Mesa is going to place a fence barrier that will clearly mark the property line for the City as well as the property owned by Mr. Jaffa. We expect the fence barrier, which will be on City property, installed within the next few weeks.