RV Park Owner Alleges Falsified Inspection, Seeks $10M

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September 30, 2009 by   - () Leave a Comment

The owner of a Dickinson, Texas, RV park claims the property has problems with its plumbing and electricity which drew the ire of the city, and is suing the previous proprietors and an inspector for approximately $10 million in damages.

In a deceptive trade lawsuit filed Sept. 25 in Galveston County District Court, Adventure I-45 Ltd. accuses Scott and Carrie Sheldon of League City, Bobby Dale Castoe of Kingston, Okla., and Shannon M. Fossier of Texas City of assuring the plaintiff that the park's wiring and sewage systems were up to code when no final inspection to confirm the statements was verified, according to the Southeast Texas Record.

"The defendants engaged in false, misleading, or deceptive acts or practices in the conduct of its trade or commerce with the plaintiff, which was the producing cause of damages to the plaintiff," the original petition says.

Court papers show the park, which is designed to have 51 lots that individuals can rent, was originally owned by Castoe until the defendant sold it to the Sheldons in September 2004.

The suit states Adventure I-45 purchased the park from the Sheldons in May 2008 for $1,125,000 with the plaintiff assuming a second mortgage worth $376,459.26 to the benefit of Castoe, who primarily bore responsibility for securing all applicable permits.

"During the events leading up to the closing of this transaction, numerous representations were made to the plaintiff by Castoe and the Sheldons that the park met all applicable codes and statutes, that it was constructed in accordance with these codes and statutes, and pursuant to the drawings and schematics on file with the city of Dickinson," the suit states.

The plaintiff reportedly hired defendant Fossier, who is doing business as Global Real Estate Inspections, to conduct a thorough and complete inspection of the property.

The suit argues Fossier did not independently inspect the park's electrical system or its individual lot panels, but instead relied on the then-property manager's statements.

It further points out that the plaintiff subsequently experienced trouble with individual recreational vehicles either catching fire or experiencing electrical shorts earlier this year, prompting the city to take disciplinary action.

"As the problems progressed, the city of Dickinson initially red-tagged the entire park by closing it down," the case says. "However, through the plaintiff's efforts and out-of-pocket costs, 12 lots are now available for use."

The plaintiff ultimately insists it suffered severe and significant economic damages as a result of the partial shutdown.

"The plaintiff was represented getting a viable park when in fact it has paid a lot of money for a monetary black hole that is nothing as was represented," the suit says.

Houston attorney Kevin R. Michaels is representing Adventure I-45, and the case has been assigned to Galveston County 405th District Court Judge Wayne Mallia.

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