Are Chris and Lisa Mattson Based on a Real Couple? Where Are They Now?

Neighbors have the potential to be either the most cherished blessings or the most distressing nightmares in our lives. Supportive and friendly neighbors can create a sense of community, offering assistance in times of need and fostering a welcoming environment. On the flip side, difficult neighbors can turn daily life into a constant challenge, leading to conflicts, stress, and discomfort.

In the case of the movie, ‘Lakeside Terrace’ it is the latter that Chris and Lisa Mattson have to endure. The film follows the ordeal and the years of harassment that the Mattsons had to put up with because of their neighbor, Abel Turner, a LAPD Officer. The social context in which the movie is placed prompts the question if the Mattsons are a real-life couple and if so, one would like to know about their whereabouts.

A Real-Life Couple Inspired the Characters of Chris and Lisa Mattson

Chris and Lisa Mattson in ‘Lakeview Terrace’ are loosely inspired by a real-life couple, John and Mellaine Hamilton. The Hamiltons were an actual couple residing in the small community of Altadena, California, with their two children, a daughter, and a son. The troubles for the Hamiltons began in 2001 when LAPD Officer Irsie Henry moved into the house right next to theirs, sparking a series of problems and conflicts.

The initial conflict between the Hamiltons and their neighbor revolved around a fencing dispute, with the neighbor asserting that the fence encroached onto his property. To compel the Hamiltons to relocate their fencing, he resorted to disruptive tactics, such as blowing dry leaves into their courtyard. Additionally, he escalated the tension by manually picking up leaves and throwing them into their space after the Hamiltons installed chicken wire to deter further disturbances. As the discord continued, the neighbor’s animosity extended beyond the couple to include attacks on their children.

Reports indicate that Irsie Henry had escalated the conflict by directing racial slurs at the Hamiltons’ children and making inappropriate comments whenever he encountered them. His accusations extended to falsely accusing the Hamiltons’ 13-year-old son of theft. A neighbor observed Henry sticking his tongue out and licking his lips at the Hamiltons’ 11-year-old daughter. The parents deemed this behavior sexually suggestive toward a child, leading to legal action. However, the court ruled in Henry’s favor, considering these gestures as mere attempts to annoy the family rather than recognizing their potentially harmful nature.

In 2002, Irsie Henry sued John Hamilton over the alleged illegal fencing, ultimately determined by a local surveyor to be on Henry’s property. John was required to pay a fine of $6,500, but this did not bring an end to Henry’s antagonistic tactics. Henry continued his campaign by throwing trash into the Hamiltons’ house. In response, the Hamiltons took measures to protect themselves, installing video surveillance outside their home and filing a restraining order against Henry. In turn, Henry reciprocated with similar actions.

In 2006, Irsie Henry faced repercussions in his professional life when he was suspended from his job at the LAPD. The suspension stemmed from a battery charge filed by another neighbor in the community. During the same year, Henry engaged in a physical altercation with John Hamilton, using pepper spray on him. John filed a complaint against Henry for this incident. Dismissed from the LAPD, Henry took a vindictive turn, resorting to acts of vengeance. He was discovered vandalizing Hamilton’s property, violating the restraining order in place against him.

John and Mellaine Hamilton Are Living in Altadena

In 2008, Irsie Henry faced trial for the assault on John Hamilton. During the proceedings, Henry asserted that he had used a deodorant spray and not pepper spray on John. Despite the court not finding him guilty of the charges, the incident prompted Henry to leave his house and relocate elsewhere. This marked the Hamiltons’ liberation from their notorious neighbor, as Henry’s departure signaled the end of their long-standing and tumultuous neighborhood feud.

According to their LinkedIn profiles, as of now, John and Mellaine are still residing in Altadena, potentially in the same house. The latter is currently employed as a stylist, while her husband has assumed the role of a manager at UPS, a truck transportation and logistics company. Limited information is available about their current circumstances, but it can be presumed that their children are now adults, and the Hamiltons are enjoying a more peaceful and stable life.

Read More: Lakeview Terrace: The True Story Behind the Movie, Explained