Couple who bought house at Sago sues
John O'Brien Sep. 21, 2006, 4:26am
BUCKHANNON - An Upshur County couple who unknowingly bought land directly above the Sago mine is suing the couple that sold it to them, claiming they did not disclose that it was above a mine shaft.
Thomas and Trudy Crawford recently filed the suit in Upshur Circuit Court against R.B. and Colleen Whittig.
The lawsuit says the Crawfords purchased the land Nov. 3, two months before the disaster at Sago mine where 12 miners were trapped underground and another died in an explosion. Eleven of the 12 trapped died before rescue workers could save them.
When the disaster transpired, the Crawfords then realized where exactly their land was situated.
"Pursuant to said real estate purchase agreement, the defendants were required to disclose any defects to the property which would effect the value of the property and would potentially effect the plaintiffs' decision to purchase said property," the complaint says.
"After purchasing the real estate from the defendants, the plaintiffs discovered as a result of the recent Sago mine disaster that their home that was purchased from the defendants was located immediately above one of the mine shafts of the now infamous Sago mine."
The plaintiffs say the location of the real estate was not disclosed and charge the defendants with breach of contract and recision, breach of implied warranty of habitability and fraud.
The Crawfords seek recision of the contract and return of their purchase price, as well as punitive damages.
Timothy LaFon of Ciccarell, Del Giudice and LaFon in Charleston is representing the plaintiffs.
"The location of this home over the Sago mine results in the property being uninhabitable," the complaint says.
Judge Thomas Keadle has been assigned the case.
Recently, the lone survivor of the Sago disaster, Randal McCloy, filed suit against the companies he feels are responsible for the incident, as did the families of the late Marty Bennett and James Bennett, who aren't related.
Also, three Upshur County residents who live along a road near Sago mine sued over truck noise and pollution.
Upshur Circuit Court case number 06-C-100