I'm really sorry this happened to you and I'm not 100% sure what advice to offer. But since this is going to 'a court' I'll assume some municipal court - try to find out what has happened in similar cases. You may need to look locally. I don't want to speculate on what your municipal bylaws might be in situations like these as some cities are stricter than others.
A written letter from your neighbour can't hurt - that's for sure.