Neighbors' fence dispute leads to unusual mannequin display

A homeowner in Santa Rosa is getting a lot of attention for the display of nude mannequins in his yard.

Jason Windus said the naked garden party is a direct response to a complaint filed by a neighbor who reported his property to code enforcement officials for having a fence that was too high.

"As you drive through the neighborhood you'll see that nobody else's fence had to be cut down but mine," Windus said.

Windus said the issue started last year when he installed a 6-foot-high fence on his corner lot on Peterson Lane. He built the fence to keep his dogs in and hopefully bring up his home's property value.

But a code enforcement officer determined the fence was in violation of the city's zoning code after an anonymous complaint was filed by one of Windus' neighbors. He was told the fence needed to be reduced to 3 feet.

A spokeswoman for the City of Santa Rosa confirmed the code enforcement office received a complaint filed by a citizen in October 2018. It was determined that Windus' fence was over 36 inches in height in the front and side yard of the corner lot, which obstructed the view of oncoming traffic for drivers at the intersection. In February 2019, city staff met with Windus to talk about options for bringing the fence into code compliance.

Windus chose to cut the fence down over the weekend and put up the display of nude mannequins.

"They were going to fine me a lot of money if I didn't cut the fence down," Windus said. "I don't know who [the neighbor] is and I'm sure they're not going to come forward."

Windus, owner of Need A Hand moving company, said he had the mannequins lying around in the yard.

"I was doing a job in Sebastopol. We cleaned out an entire clothing store and I couldn't bring myself to throw them away because they were so cool," Windus said.

The display is now the talk of the town.

"I wasn't expecting any of this," he said. "We've had like 50 people stop, taking pictures, telling me how great it is."