MORGANTOWN -- A Monongalia County man refuses to repair or maintain his home and now faces consequences.

The Monongalia County Commission has filed a lawsuit claiming that Columba Nwoko repeatedly has been warned about the dangers of his property, but he refuses to make the necessary and required repairs to make his home a suitable place to live as well as an aesthetic part of his neighborhood.

In the suit filed Jan. 6, the Monongalia County Commission stated that the Dilapidated Property Enforcement Agency of Morgantown has assessed, visited and fined Nwoko more than 10 times. The house is considered salvageable but only after serious remodeling. Both the inside and the outside of the house are in dire need of repair because of the long period of obvious negligence, the suit claims.

Filed by Phillip M. Magro of Magro & Magro, the Monongalia County Commission claims that even after all the Dilapidated Property Enforcement Agency's visits, assessments and fines, Nwoko has done nothing to help the property.

The suit says the vegetation on the property is overgrown, the house is falling down, the foundation is cracked, the roof leaks, the staircase in the home is dangerous and the property currently is not able to be sold. The property is not just in disrepair, but it has actually become dangerous to live nearby. He faces losing the deed to the land on which the house stands and eviction from his own property.

The Monongalia County Commission and Magro are seeking a trial by jury to decide a judgment. Repairs to the home, the deed to the land on which it stands, and eventual sale of the property are just a few of the damages that the Monongalia County Commission seeks. They are also hoping Judge Robert Stone will make Magro a special commissioner to overlook the repairs and the sale of the property.

Monongalia County Circuit Court case number: 06-C-10

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