What to Know

  • A childs birthday gift out on Long Island has turned into a court fight for his dad [hhmc]

  • John Lepper built a treehouse for his son as a birthday gift; He says he filed all the appropriate paperwork[hhmc]

  • However, Babylon officials sent letters to Lepper saying the structure is violating building codes; Lepper is taking his fight to court[hhmc]

A childs birthday gift out on Long Island has turned into a court fight for his dad.

John Lepper is a New York City firefighter who went to contractor and drafting school. It was there that he picked up the skills that ultimately helped him create a treehouse as a gift for his sons birthday.

However, Lepper found himself in hot water.

The Village of Babylon sent letters to Lepper stating that he doesnt have the right permit and is in violation of the local building code.

Teresa Crawford/AP

Lepper disagrees, saying he did file the necessary paperwork and the treehouse was built within the law.

He is now taking the fight to court in hopes that his sons treehouse wont have to be dismantled and brought down.

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“The whole neighborhood is in support of the treehouse,” he said.

According to Lepper, there is another reason why he hopes the treehouse stays pirched, overlooking his backyard. Lepper says he recently found a needle in the bushes next to his home. He thinks the lights installed on the treehouse could deter crime on an otherwise dark street.

“This is what they want to waste taxpayer dollars on: treehouses. Not heroin needles. But, treehouses,” he says.

Lepper is set to take his fight to the state appeals court in the coming days.

Babylon officials couldnt be reached Monday due to the Veterans Day holiday.

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