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West Virginia's Legal Journal

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    MADISON — How best to fix a faulty diesel engine injector is to have a day in court.

    Madison Attorney Bobby R. Hale says Turnpike Ford Inc. failed to properly repair his 2003 Ford F250 pickup at its Marmet service garage. He says he paid for parts and labor in March 2010 to replace injector number five, which was represented to be bad.

    Hale says when he picked up his vehicle he was told “that since the engine now had one new injector and seven old injectors the engine would not run smoothly because the seven old injectors were weaker … and that all injectors should be replaced to solve the problem.”

    There was a serious problem with the engine, Hale complains, when he drove his truck home. Several mechanics told him not to drive the truck “for fear of damaging the engine beyond repair,” Hale relates.

    The truck was towed from Hale’s residence to the service facility of Bert Wolfe Ford in Charleston. Hale says a certified Ford diesel mechanic solved his problem by replacing the number five injector, explaining that injector number three had been replaced.

    Hale complains defendant refuses to reimburse him for towing and repair billing He seeks judgment for an amount sufficient to compensate “for his special and general damages,” as well as litigation costs and pre- and post-judgment interest.

    Attorney Joel Baker is representing Hale. The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge William S. Thompson.

    Boone Circuit Court case number: 11-C-35

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    MADISON — A Wyoming County couple holds Massey operations and affiliate Marfork Coal Co. responsible for the husband’s injuries caused by a “rib roll” while working as a scoop operator at the Parker Peerless Mine.

    Randall D. Campbell Jr. and wife Mellissa of Oceana filed their personal injury suit in Boone Circuit Court, which has jurisdiction over the principal places of business for defendants Marfork; Massey Coal Services, Inc.; and Massey Energy Co. Parker Peerless Mine is located at Naomi, Raleigh County.

    Complaint says Campbell was setting timbers last July in the Parker Peerless No. 3 entry when struck in the back by the rib roll. Serious injuries included spinal cord paraplegia and multiple rib fractures, according to the suit which mentions the safety program at Parker Peerless was the responsibility of Massey Coal Services and Massey Energy.

    Campbell charges no pre-shift examinations were conducted for evening and day turns the date he was hurt.

    Five counts detailed against defendants include intentional exposure, recklessness and negligence and loss of consortium.

    Charleston attorney Bernard E. Layne III and attorneys Mark D. and Rachel Hanna Moreland of Lewisburg will argue for jury judgment, jointly and severally, for compensatory and punitive damages, pre-judgment interest on all losses and expenses and cost of litigation for the Campbells.

    The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge William S. Thompson.

    Boone Circuit Court case number: 11-C-37

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  • 03/18/11--00:00: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • Feb. 28
    Ella C. Ball vs. Ocwen Loan Servicing LLC
    PA- Bren J. Pomponio, Daniel F. Hedges; J- William S. Thompson
    * Madison woman accuses Florida firm of loan service abuse, citing Breach of Contract and Illegal Debt Collection. Ball says Ocwen agreed to a loan modification and then threatened foreclosure despite her continued payments on property purchased in 1995. She refinanced in 2009 with Saxon Mortgage, which assigned servicing rights to Ocwen. Ball says she got a written loan modification agreement in April 2010 lowering her payments. In June 2010, complaint continues, she was told her loan modification was denied and in August got a Notice of Default, and scheduled foreclosure sale. Ball seeks jury judgment for actual damages, civil penalties for each violation of West Virginia Code, litigation expenses, and such other relief deemed equitable and just.
    Case number: 11-C-38

    Feb. 25
    William Miller vs. Cliffs Logan County Coal LLC; Cliffs Logan County Holdings LLC; Cliffs Natural Resources Inc.; and Michael Necessary, an individual
    PA- Harry M. Hatfield, Matthew M. Hatfield, Mark A. Atkinson; J- William S. Thompson
    * Miller says he was employed by Defendants last August as a Lead Safety Auditor and was terminated in December after making numerous inquiries about safety issues at the Powellton underground mine and other operations. He cites “unlawful retaliatory discharge” and age discrimination in violation of the State Human Rights Act. Complaint seeks jury trial to determine damages for lost wages and benefits, indignity, embarrassment, humiliation and emotional distress; punitive damages, pre-judgment interest and costs of litigation.
    Case number: 11-C-39

    March 1
    Linda Searls vs. Discover Financial Services Inc.
    PA- John W. Barrett, Jonathan R. Marshall; J- William S. Thompson
    * Civil Action declares Searls is a severely disabled widow who incurred sizeable credit card debt after her husband died. Searls says she struggled to make monthly payments, and then following phone calls and letters she retained Attorney Marshall Spradling to negotiate with creditors to avoid bankruptcy. Discover Financial, according to Searls, continued to contact her directly in violation of West Virginia Code. She seeks jury award of actual damages, civil penalties for each violation of State law, court costs, and such other relief deemed equitable and just.
    Case number: 11-C-40

    Linda Searls vs. Associated Recovery Systems; GC Services Limited Partnership; and Chase Bank USA, N.A.
    PA- Barrett, Marshall; J- William S. Thompson
    * Complaint styled same as 11-C-40 (above) says Attorney Spradling sent certified letter to Chase offering to pay portion of Searls1 debt and advising future contact be with counsel. Bank continued to “dun” Searls, according to complaint, then hired Associated Recovery and GC who continued to contact her. Searls seeks same jury award as noted above.
    Case number: 11-C-41

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  • 03/25/11--00:10: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • March 3
    Oakpoint Management LLC vs. Eastern Associated Coal LLC and Patriot Coal Corp.
    PA- Larry E. Losch; J- William S. Thompson
    * Owner of a parcel of property in Crook District, Boone County, since April 2001, Oakpoint seeks jury judgment for $15,000 against coal companies accused of damaging timber. St. Albans based company says Defendants in spring 2009 established roads and destroyed timber being managed for sale.
    Case number: 11-C-43

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  • 04/01/11--00:00: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • March 17
    Jana Tudor vs. United Healthcare Services Inc.; Care Solutions, Inc., & Melinda
    Ransom, Individually
    PA- Mark A. Atkinson; J- William S. Thompson
    * Tudor says her employer and supervisor discriminated and retaliated against her because she attempted to receive Workers’ Compensation benefits in 2009. Employed about a year, she claims she was terminated willfully and maliciously in violation of the West Virginia Human Rights Act and seeks jury damages for lost wages and benefits, back and front pay; indignity, embarrassment and humiliation, punitive damages to be determined, prejudgment interest, litigation costs, plus whatever additional relief deemed just and equitable.
    Case number: 11-C-51

    March 18
    Stone Street Capital, LLC for Mearlene Thompson
    PA- Robert L. Bandy; J- Thompson
    * Stone Street petitions for approval of Transfer of Structured Settlement Payment Rights. The Foster resident desires to sell a portion of her periodic settlement payments in return for lump sum of more than $58,200 to pay off some of her debt. Hearing on Petition scheduled April 12.
    Case number: 11-C-52

    March 24
    Spartan Mining Co., Massey Coal Services, Inc., and Massey Energy Co. vs. Mate Creek Trucking, Inc., Colonial National Insurance Co.
    PA- Brian J. Warner; J- Thompson
    * Coal companies reference an underlying civil action filed in Logan County Circuit Court concerning a September 2008 accident in which Reece Hammond alleges injury while operating equipment at Spartan’s Hatfield Energy Mine. Suit says Hammond was “a borrowed servant” of Mate Creek Trucking at the time in accordance with a Hauling and Delivery Agreement with Spartan. Coal companies want “a declaration of legal rights and responsibilities under (1) a Hauling and Delivery Agreement and (2) an insurance policy at issue in the underlying Civil Action.” They say Defendants have responsibility to “indemnify, defend, and hold harmless Owner against any and all Losses resulting from the use, misuse, or failure of such equipment…”
    Case number: 11-C-56

    Charles D. & Phoebe S. Rakes vs. Dennis L. Cook Sr. and State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co.
    PA- Michael E. Froble; J- Thompson
    * Personal injury suit describes vehicular accident on W.Va. 99, Bald Knob Road, in March 2009, saying Cook’s truck struck the Roanoke couple’s car head on; Charles Rakes was driving, wife Phoebe his passenger. They complain Cook’s “acts or omissions” caused Ms Rakes’ medical expenses of more than $15,800, including lingering pain, suffering and permanent injuries. Rakeses seek jury judgment for not less than $50,000, or such amount Court deems justified.
    Case number: 11-C-58

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    MADISON – A Spencer-based drilling company was ordered to cease operations at its permitted gas well site located two miles south of Madison because it failed to provide erosion and sediment control that led to a severe wash-out of an access road and pollution of fresh water.

    West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection presented violations of State laws governing oil and gas activity in Boone Circuit Court against DD OIL CO., also known as David Dale dba DD Oil Company. DD got a permit Aug. 27, 2010, to drill a gas well known as “Bradshaw 1″ in Washington District.

    A complaint was received last March 11 by the State DEP saying “Well road washing down hill into river …” DEP personnel determined “sedimentation and other debris has entered the Spruce Fork of the Coal River.”

    Attorney Jody C. Jones filed the DEP’s Application for Injunctive Relie on March 29. Judge William S. Thompson granted Preliminary Injunction April 7.

    Boone Circuit Court case number 11-C-59

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    MADISON – Three estate handlers for victims of the Upper Big Branch coal mine explosion have joined the list of plaintiffs in Boone Circuit Court seeking jury judgments for a variety of awards.

    Amanda Atkins, Administratrix for the Estate of Jason Atkins of Foster (Case number 11-C-71) seeks to recover compensatory, punitive and exemplary damages from those alleged to have caused, or contributed, to her husband’s death.

    Defendants named are Performance Coal Co., Inc.; Massey Coal Services, Inc.; Don Blankenship (CEO) and Massey Energy Co., plus 14 individuals from MEC’s Board of Directors and unknown defendants 1-10.

    Other eligible beneficiaries for payment of damages, the complaint says, include Atkins’ mother, father and brother. Atkins worked underground for Performance Coal, which has a principal office in Boone County.

    The suit mentions Blankenship “exerted personal control over day to day management activities of the Upper Big Branch Mine …” as Massey Energy CEO, while Massey Coal Services also had a role in operations.

    Boone Circuit Court has added case numbers 11-C-72 and 11-C-73 to its large group of complaints stemming from the UBB blast that are similarly styled against the aforementioned defendants. Now included are Laura Chapman for the Estate of Kenneth Chapman and Shelby King, Administratrix of the Estate of Nicholas McCroskey.

    Atkins’ counsel is Madison Attorney Wendle D. Cook. Chapman is represented by Warrne R. McGraw II of Prosperity and the King complaint has Charleston Attorney Michael J. Del Giudice.

    Trial dates were not scheduled as of April 13 in Judge William S. Thompson’s Court, which had seven sealed cases among the total of 21 relative to the UBB event.

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  • 04/22/11--00:00: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • March 31
    Mary L. Fox, individually and As Administratrix of the Estate of Gary N. Fox vs. Mine Safety Appliances Co., Persinger Supply Co., Raleigh Mine & Industrial Supply Co. and Eastern States Mine Supply Co.
    PA- G. Todd Houck; J- William S. Thompson
    * Beckley widow complains Defendants manufactured, distributed and sold defective respirators that contributed to her coal miner husband’s death in April 2009. Mary Fox was appointed Administratrix of his estate last March 4. She says her husband, a miner more than 30 years, “was exposed to substantial amounts of harmful dust because respirators he used failed to protect him.” Fox seeks jury judgment, jointly and severally, for compensatory and punitive damages in fair and reasonable amounts shown by evidence, her court costs, pre- and post-judgment interest, plus all further relief to which she is entitled.
    Case number: 11-C-61

    April 4
    Lisa Ann Peters, as Parent & Next Friend of Carlos W. Pridemore, an Infant, petitions for approval and confirmation of an insurance settlement of $5,000 concerning the 15-year-old’ injuries from a 2009 vehicle accident on Interstate 79
    PA-Kirk Lightener; J-William S. Thompson
    * The youth and another boy were passengers in Frealon Pridemore’s pickup truck that rear-ended a disabled vehicle on I-79 at Elkview. The senior Pridemore had Westfield Insurance Co. coverage, and while denying liability for the 2009 mishap, they want approval of the $5,000 settlement. Judge William S. Thompson will schedule a hearing on the petition.
    Case number: 11-C-70

    April 5
    Malloy Miller vs. Tom Medina
    PA- Bobby R. Hale; J- William S. Thompson
    * Miller filed an ex parte motion for a temporary restraining order against Medina. He contends Defendant trespasses and damages and destroys his real estate denying Miller peaceful and quiet enjoyment of his property. Judge Thompson scheduled a hearing on the motion for April 14.
    Case number: 11-C-74

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    MADISON — A Madison man seeks money damages, injunctive action and “other equitable and legal relief” for what he calls unlawful discrimination and retaliation that ended his employment at Boone County Foodland.

    Joshua Hawk alleges in Boone Circuit Court filings on April 21 that he was discharged from the Facemire Foods-South store “for having a perceived disability and/or for filing a workers’ compensation claim …”

    Hawk was employed as a general laborer with duties that included stocking shelves and placing displays.

    Attorney Mark L. French of Charleston represents that Hawk was instructed on Feb. 5, 2009, “to place a display case on top of a dairy cooler” said to be 18 feet in height when he injured his back.

    He was taken to a hospital by a Foodland owner, Dan Facemire, treated in the emergency room and ordered to follow-up with a family doctor, the complaint says.

    Eventually there was diagnosis of “a bulging disk and bulging sacrum,” according to the complaint, and Foodland’s workers’ compensation insurance carrier, Brickstreet, approving follow-up care.

    Hawk was released for work “with a 25-pound lifting restriction,” complaint relates, and when he met with store manager Gary Isaac and owner Facemire he was informed he had to be released with no restrictions in order to return to work.

    Complaint says Hawk was released Aug. 10, 2009, with no work restrictions, but was not re-hired.

    He’s demanding jury trial seeking the following relief: Permanent injunction ordering Foodland to cease and desist from engaging in the unlawful conduct alleged in complaint; award of back and front pay, including all eligible benefits; compensatory and punitive damages; out-of-pocket losses; pre- and post-judgment interest; costs of litigation; plus such other relief deemed appropriate.

    The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge William S. Thompson.

    Boone Circuit Court case number: 11-C-84

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  • 05/06/11--00:05: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • April 12
    Walter Hyatt d/b/a Hyatt Construction and George E. Mercury, LLC d/b/a Greg Loyd Management Associates vs. Amplified Contracting Corp., David Hayes and Xpress Services & Sales, Inc.
    PA- Wendle D. Cook; J- William S. Thompson
    * Complaint says money is owed for materials and construction on a Danville building. The out-of-state companies filed a contract suit detailing more than $13,000 is owed Hyatt and more than a $10,000 balance is due Loyd. They seek jury awards, jointly and severally, for compensatory damages, litigation expenses, pre- and post-judgment interest, and that property to which a mechanics lien is attached be sold to satisfy the debts.
    Case number: 11-C-78

    April 18
    Patton and Mary Hylton vs. MineSafety Appliances Co., Inc.; Persinger Supply Co.; Raleigh Mine & Industrial Supply Co.; and Eastern States Mine Supply Co.
    PA- G.Todd Houck; J- William S. Thompson
    * Product liability suit says Hylton was exposed to “substantial amounts of harmful dust” when respirators manufactured and marketed by defendants did not protect him, causing him to develop advanced lung disease. Beckley resident, who worked some 21 years at mines in Wyoming and Boone counties, claims he was supplied faulty respirators distributed by defendants in Boone County. Hyltons seek what a jury judges fair and reasonable compensatory damages as per evidence, punitive damages against Mine Safety Appliances only, court costs, pre- and post-judgment interest and all further relief to which they’re entitled.
    Case number: 11-C-80

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  • 05/20/11--00:10: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • May 2
    Phillip M. & Rebecca Edenton vs. Brian D. Bryant
    PA- Keith B. Walker; J- William S. Thompson
    * Phillip Edenton seeks jury judgment blaming the Alexandria, Va., defendant for a June 2009 head-on collision with his motorcycle on the Little Coal River Trail System in Boone County. Bryant is accused of running his ATV into the bike on a curve along the Hatfield-McCoy Trails. Claiming severe, significant and debilitating physical injuries, as well as emotional distress, the Bumpass, Va., couple wants compensatory and punitive damages, pre- and post-judgment interest, litigation expenses, and such other relief deemed just and proper by the jury.
    Case number: 11-C-90

    May 6
    Timothy Bevel vs. Patriot Coal Corp., Douglas M. Epling and Mountain Edge Mining
    PA- Robert B. Warner, Tammy Bowles J- William S. Thompson
    * Bevel’s personal injury suit demands, among several things, jury awards of compensatory damages, pre- and post-judgment interest, attorney’s fees and court expenses, plus punitive damages against Epling and Patriot Coal. Employed as a laborer by Mountain Edge at the Coalburg No. 1 Mine near Whitesville, Bevel says he was instructed “to stand at an elevated height on top of the canopy of a moving hauler along with a co-worker to hammer and tighten rollers into place using a sledge hammer and hand tools while within close proximity to each other, and without the use of any fall protection.” Complaint says his May 2009 assignment resulted in being “struck in the head with the coworker’s sledge hammer.” Bevel says he fell to the ground unconscious and it took some 45 minutes to evacuate him by flight to intensive care in a Charleston hospital. According to the complaint, Bevel had serious head and neck injuries that included skull fracture and traumatic brain injury. Defendant Epling had operational control at the mine, complaint says, and Patriot Coal was the owner in Boone County.
    Case number: 11-C-94

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  • 06/17/11--00:00: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • May 23
    John R. Hickman vs. Mountain Edge Mining, Inc.
    PA- G. Patrick Jacobs; J- William S. Thompson
    * Kanawha City man seeks jury trial to get reinstatement of family health insurance retroactive to last November when he was informed by his Beckley-based employer his coverage was terminated. Hickman’s personal injury suit says he was employed last July in Boone County where he was injured on the job in late October and filed for Workers’ Compensation. He claims cancelation of his company provided health insurance violates State law. He wants his coverage reinstated, reimbursement of medical bills he paid, compensatory damages, litigation costs, and pre- and post-judgment interest.
    Case number: 11-C-96

    Brenda K. Starcher, Administratrix of the Estate of Wilbert R. Starcher vs. White Buck Coal Co., Massey Coal Services, Inc.; Massey Energy Co., and Elk Run Coal Co.
    PA Gregory W. Sproles; J- William S. Thompson
    * Greenbrier County widow seeks jury awards relative to wrongful death of Wilbert Starcher, who suffered fatal injuries in an accident last July in White Buck’s underground mine near Rupert. Brenda Starcher contends a metal “sideboard” installed between the operator’s deck and bed on a shuttle car “significantly hindered and obstructed the vision of the operator … which proximately caused or substantially contributed to the incident … which resulted in the death of Wilbert R. Starcher.” She holds the Massey companies responsible for safety regulation compliances at subsidiary mining operations like White Buck and says Elk Run employees installed the questionable sideboard. Massey and Elk Run have operations in Boone County, although Starcher’s fatal accident was in Greenbrier County. His widow wants sufficient and recoverable wrongful death damages; pre- and post-judgment interest; punitive damages jointly and severally; and litigation expenses.
    Case number: 11-C-97

    May 25
    Lawanda Bentler, individually & as next friend & legal guardian of Destiny A. Bentler, a minor child vs. John W.F. Haner & Phillip H. Haner
    PA- P. Gregory Haddad, Kerne Wagoner Boyle; J- William S. Thompson
    * Suit claims elevated lead levels in their subleased dwelling on Spruce River Road at Ottawa justify personal injury damages, jointly and severally, against the home owners. Lawanda Bentler subleased her residence in March 2004 through October 2007. Her daughter, 18 months old in 2004, tested for elevated lead levels in 2007. Bentler’s suit says an inspection conducted by the State Department of Health & Human Resources revealed several indoor and outdoor areas of the home tested positive for lead-based paint. Three houses owned by the Haners at Ottawa were built prior to 1978. Future medical problems of a permanent nature are expected for the girl, Bentler claims, and the home owners had a duty to notify lessees of potential lead-based hazards and acted in a negligent manner. She demands jury judgment, jointly and severally, to fairly compensate for past, present and future injuries.
    Case number: 11-C-99

    Siegel White, Jr. & Carolyn White vs. Mine Safety Appliances Co., Inc.; Persinger Supply Co., Raleigh Mine & Industrial Supply Co., & Eastern States Mine Supply Co.
    PA- John Hunt Morgan; J- William S. Thompson
    * Whites product liability suit contends the veteran coal miner developed an occupational lung dust disease, or “black lung,” because of hidden leakage defects and inadequate warnings with respirators manufactured and marketed by defendants. Danville couple seeks compensatory and punitive damages, litigation costs, declaration of rights between parties, and pre- and post-judgment interest.
    Case number: 11-C-100

    Jerry & Debra Gillenwater vs. Mine Safety Appliances Co., et al
    PA- John Hunt Morgan; J- William S. Thompson
    * Peytona couple wants jury awards for compensatory and punitive damages, their court expenses, declaration of rights between parties, s and pre- and post-judgment interest, contending defendants manufactured and sold defective respirators he used while working as a coal miner that led to “black lung” disease.
    Case number: 11-C-101

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  • 07/01/11--00:05: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • May 26
    Michael H. Graley vs. Raven Crest Contracting, LLC
    PA- Dana F. Eddy; J- William S. Thompson
    * Lincoln County resident complains he was fired after shares of stock of Raven Crest were sold by parent company JMP Coal Holdings to Xinergy Corp. Employed since November 2008, Graley relates how he was placed in various jobs after the stock sale, lastly to operate a rock truck, although he had less than two weeks experience with rock trucks. Engine of his truck broke down, he says, and a mechanic determined the engine should have been rebuilt or replaced after 8,000-10,000 hours use. Truck in question had 24,000 hours use. Graley implied the superintendent who took over after exchange of stock had wanted him terminated so he could hire another person he favored. Graley believes the superintendent used the rock truck breakdown as reason to terminate him in violation, among other things, of the West Virginia Human Rights Act. He seeks jury trial for award of an amount to fairly compensate him for damages/statuatory penalties, as well as attorney fees and court costs.
    Case number: 11-C-103

    June 9
    State of West Virginia & Madison Police Dept. vs. Two Thousand Three Chevrolet Cavalier & Gary Yeager
    PA- Justin A. Marlowe, Asst. Prosecuting Attorney; J- William S. Thompson
    * Hearing is scheduled August 11 on Petition for Forfeiture of the vehicle driven by Yeager last May 14 in Madison area that Police say was used in selling controlled substances. Officer L.W. Holeston reported Yeager had a container for 90 Xanax pills, with only two remaining.
    Case number: 11-C-108

    June 13
    Arthur L. Barker vs. Paul S. & Rebecca S. Pratt
    PA- Trent A. Redman; J- William S. Thompson
    * Barker’s Petition For Declaratory Judgment refers to an April 1987 contract for sale of a 1.2-acre parcel of land in Scott District on which there have been several late payments. He wants Pratts ordered to vacate the property and court award him the attorney’s fees.
    Case number: 11-C-110

    June 16
    Joseph A. Saunders vs. Administrator Joseph A. Saunders
    PA- pro se; J- William S. Thompson
    * Chief Saunders of West Virginia State University Public Safety Department files Notice Of Lein upon interest in three South Madison lots of land part of the estate of Kenny G. Saunders. Joseph Saunders asks the Court to notice he furnished and delivered services regarding K. Saunders’ estate and has not been reimbursed some $10,000.
    Case number: 11-C-112

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  • 07/15/11--00:10: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • June 28
    Benjamin L. Mullens vs. Independence Coal Co., Inc. and Massey Energy Co.
    PA- J. Michael Ranson, Cynthia M. Ranson, George B. Morrone III, G. Patrick Jacobs; J- William S. Thompson
    * Mullens’ personal injury suit alleges coal companies exposed him to unsafe conditions while working in a coal feeder dump truck “under a rock wall without shield protection” in violation of state or federal safety regulations. He says rocks from above broke loose in June 2009 while he was doing his job and caused serious head and facial injuries that required expenditures of large sums of money for medical and hospital treatment, both past and future. Mullens elaborated he was doing contract work for Massey Energy, owner of the property mined by Independence Coal. He seeks jury judgment jointly and severally to set compensatory damages and award court costs, attorney fees and any other relief the court finds equitable.
    Case number: 11-C-114

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  • 07/29/11--00:05: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • July 18
    Verified Petition of Shelley Holstine, Parent of Shayla, Ivori & Autumn Holstine, Minors, Requesting Court’s Approval of the Terms of the Proposed Settlement of the Minors’ Claims for Personal Injury, the Proposed Release of Any Liability With Respect to the Claims, and the Proposed Distribution of the Proceeds of the Settlement
    PA- Teresa D. Daniel; J- William S. Thompson.
    * The three girls from Costa, aged 14, 15 and 17, were passengers injured in a vehicle accident on Route 17 late in March 2010 when driver Crystal G. Slazo was forced out of her lane to miss an oncoming vehicle. Her vehicle traveled up an embankment, struck a tree and rolled over on its top, sliding some 20 feet to a stop. Approval of proposed settlements totaling $34,000 would fully release Crystal Slazo, vehicle owners and Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co., its agents and assigns, from any and all liabilities.
    Case number: 11-C-151

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    MADISON — A rock truck driver has brought a personal injury suit against Hobet Mining, claiming faulty operational parts of his truck bed caused him to suffer severe and permanent injuries.

    Tony K. Richardson of Madison filed the sute July 13 in Boone County Circuit Court.

    He operated truck 685 at Hobet 21 Surface Mine. The claim describes how he operated the truck in April 2010 to dump rock and overburden at an area adjacent to a valley fill location. Proceeding to position his truck to dump its load, Richardson says he heard “an unusual noise” coming from the truck bed. He says the dozer operator acting as spotter also heard the noise.

    With the truck bed fully raised, complaint says dozer man advised Richardson that he suspected there was damage to the hydraulic lifting jacks. The men contacted their pit boss reporting concern about damaged lifting jacks posing a potential free fall of the truck bed.

    Driver was instructed to move his truck out of the dump area, suit relates, and as he proceeded to lower the bed it fell onto the truck frame. Suit says driver and passenger side doors were knocked open by the force of the collision and Richardson was thrown from the cab, thereby suffering neck and back injuries.

    Plaintiff says he was advised later that limiter switches on the truck bed lifting jacks had been removed, leaving the bed’s jacks out of specification. Richardson taken to a hospital by ambulance, complaint says, but his injury was never reported to state or federal mine authorities.

    Attorneys for Richardson are L. Lee Javins, D. Blake Carter Jr. and Brad Dorsey of Charleston. Citing “Deliberate Intent,” the suit says Hobet required Plaintiff to operate a rock truck lacking limiter switches in violation of state and federal mine safety regulations. Complaint seeks jury judgment for an amount to be determined, together with court costs, attorney fees and pre-and-post-judgment interest.

    Trial is projected for July 2012 before Judge William S. Thompson.

    Boone Circuit Court case number: 11-C-146

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  • 08/19/11--00:05: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • July 20
    Craig Cooper vs. Matthew Hill
    PA-G. Patrick Jacobs; J-Thompson
    * Cooper, an Ohio resident, says he was struck as a pedestrian by a vehicle operated by Hill at Spurlockville in July 2009 while staying with his grandmother. He seeks compensatory damages, pre- and post-judgment interest and court costs.
    Case number: 11-C-152

    July 27
    Katie Hall, individually and as administratrix of the estate of Brian Keith Hall, deceased vs. Unum Life Insurance Co. of America
    PA-John J. Polak, Matthew M. Hatfield; J-Thompson
    * Katie HAll says she was the primary beneficiary of proceeds payable from the accidental death of B.K. Hall under Patriot Coal’s plan insured by Unum. B.K. Hall died September 2010 in an accident. Plaintiff says her claim was denied by Unum last November, and her appeals were refused in February and May. She seeks recovery of all benefits under terms of the plan as well as pre-judgment interest, court costs and other relief.
    Case number: 11-C-154

    July 29
    Lucille Jordan vs. Xinergy of West Virginia Inc., JMP Coal Holdings LLC, Raven Crest Contracting LLC, Steven R. Mullings Excavating Inc., Virginia Explosives & Drilling Co. Inc., Virginia Drilling Co. LLC and Bundy Auger Mining Inc.
    PA-John Skaggs; J-Thompson
    * Jordan says defendant companies began blasting through bedrock in June 2007 near her property in Costa. She says blasting caused damage to her homes and real property, decreasing their value and creating expenses for repairs. She also cites substantial annoyance and inconvenience. She seeks compensatory damages, pre- and post-judgment interest, court costs and other relief.
    Case number: 11-C-155

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    MADISON – A Boone County couple seeks jury trial complaining that GE Money Bank has held up their sale of real property in Madison.

    Brent and Kim Lilly, represented by Madison Attorney Harry G. Shaffer, III, relate how a closing title examination found several liens of record for the property they wished to sell. Included was a lien in principal amount of $827 for GE Money Bank, a unit of the General Electric Co. that placed the lien with Mapother & Mapother for collection.

    Lillys say after several attempts to contact M & M regarding a payoff, they placed $1,700 in escrow for the lien. In August 2010, after several attempts to contact Mapother, Lillys relate, they were directed to GE Money Bank, which had “pulled this account.” GE informed the couple, according to complaint, that written authorization to the Shaffer & Shaffer law firm was necessary to allow conversation about the account.

    Case details that after six attempts in October and November 2010 to contact GE, a representative informed that the lien had been satisfied. Boone County Clerk’s Office verified last December 17 that no release had been recorded concerning the subject lien, which caused a default on the Lillys’ General Warranty of title and held up the property sale.

    Couple wants a jury to order release of the lien; determine damages for past and future annoyance and inconvenience, and loss of use of escrow funds, award litigation costs, pre- and post-judgment interests, and any other relief allowed by law.

    The complaint was filed Aug. 9 in Judge William S. Thompson’s Boone Circuit Court.

    Boone Circuit Court case number: 11-C-164

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  • 09/09/11--00:10: CIVIL FILINGS: Boone County
  • Aug. 9
    John Buffington vs. Aaron K. Barker, Encompass Insurance Co.
    PA- Joel Baker; J- William S. Thompson
    * Seth resident seeks jury awards resulting from a September 2010 collision with his motorcycle at a railroad crossing on County Route 5 allegedly caused by Barker. Suit says Barker was operating a car owned by Charles Santonio when he struck Buffington’s bike from behind as Plaintiff slowed almost to a stop to cross the tracks. Buffington was ejected from his motorcycle, complaint says, suffering “severe and permanent damage.” Barker was issued a warning citation “for failure to maintain control/speeding.” Buffington wants compensatory damages sufficient to cover present and future medical expenses, lost earning capacity, litigation expenses, and pre- and post-judgment interests.
    Case number: 11-C-163

    Aug. 15
    Citibank, N.A. vs. Clyde M. Cooper
    PA- Andrew N. Frye, III; J- Thompson
    * Complaint seeks judgment for $12,800 it says Orgas resident owes on Sears Credit Card, plus statutory interest and court costs.
    Case number: 11-C-165

    Aug. 18
    Harley-Davidson Financial Services, Inc. vs. Angela L. Allen
    PA- Ryan S. Marsteller; J- Thompson
    * Finance company says Ashford woman is more than 12 months past due on a promissory note and security agreement, with loan payoff amount of $19,973. HD Financial wants to repossess Allen’s motorcycle for resale, but wants to collect any deficiency amount if sale falls short of her contractual debt. Pre- and post-judgment interests and court expenses also are sought.
    Case number: 11-C-168

    Aug. 29
    Douglas & Sandra Harless vs. Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., dba America’s Wholesale Lender; Solution One Mortgage, LLC; Bac Home Loans Servicing, LP, and Mark Greenlee
    PA- Daniel F. Hedges; J- Thompson
    * Danville couple complains they were solicited by Solution One Mortgage for a refinancing in 2006 at the Home Show in Charleston. Predatory Lending suit says broker, or Solution One, arranged for an appraisal by Greenlee, whose license was revoked in 2009 “due to fraudulent conduct.” Plaintiffs say their Daytona Lane residence was valued in excess of $205,000, when actual market value at the time was no more than $117,000. Lender Countrywide “originated a loan on the appraisal without meaningful review” and added substantial broker compensation, according to complaint. “In Aug. 2011,” complaint continues, “Plaintiffs discovered the true value of their home in May 2006 to be $117,000.” Suit brings three counts: “Unconscionable Inducement … Fraudulent Appraisal … Illegal Loan.” Harlesses demand jury trial determine following judgments: Void the loan and security interest, actual damage awards, civil penalties of $4,400 for each violation of State Code, such other relief deemed reasonable and just, and appropriate declaratory relief.
    Case number: 11-C-171

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    MADISON — A woman claims she is entitled to compensation for taking care of a man prior to his death in May 2009.

    When Ermal Kenneth Bell died in May 2009, daughter Jeana Kirk of Hewett was appointed Administratrix of his estate, according to a lawsuit filed Sept. 1 by Helen Baldwin.

    Another daughter is Pam Meikle of Wichita, Kansas. Baldwin and her attorney Timothy R. Conaway of Madison filed an appeal of last August’s order by the Boone County Commission supporting rejection of her claim against Bell’s estate by Fiduciary Commissioner Harold H. Madison.

    E.K. Bell resided with Baldwin 13 years and required special care the last two years of his life, she detailed in her appeal for compensation for services furnished. Kirk filed objection to the Proof of Claim filed by Baldwin requesting payment for services furnished Bell during his lifetime. She explains she was given $65 per week for room and board, but paid all expenses of the household.

    After Bell died, Baldwin’s appeal relates, his children immediately began moving his possessions from her home and Kirk “demanded to know where her Dad’s money was located.” He reportedly didn’t believe in banking and kept a substantial amount of money in a box. Pam Meikle found a box of money, Baldwin says, and she saw Meikle write down $94,000 on an envelope when money was counted.

    Baldwin says Meikle gave her $10,000.

    Baldwin’s appeal mentions there was no family relationship with Bell “that gives rise to the presumption that Ms. Baldwin’s care of Mr. Bell was for free” She “is entitled to be paid for the reasonable value of the services,” her appeal continues.

    She seeks $49,925 as total net compensation, praying that Boone Circuit Court reverse the Fiduciary Commissioner’s decision.

    The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge William S. Thompson.

    Boone Circuit Court case number: 11-C-172

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