Evicted man says stuff was soaked

By John O'Brien | Sep 8, 2006

CHARLESTON - A Charleston man says he was wrongfully evicted from his apartment and suffered property damage when his possessions were placed on the street.

James Renkal filed suit Aug. 28 in Kanawha Circuit Court against Dan Lanham, doing business as Lanham Rental Properties.

Renkal says he lost approximately $10,000 of personal property that was soaked by rain or stolen while he was on the street.

On Nov. 24, 2004, he said he returned to his apartment building on Glenwood Ave. in Charleston to discover his stuff on the sidewalk and his locks changed.

"Plaintiff had no vehicle or place to live and attempted to protect the property as best he could," the complaint says. "Before he was able to obtain a vehicle to transport the personal property to a location to store it, all of the property was either stolen or damaged by rain."

One month earlier, an order was entered by a Kanawha County magistrate that declared Renkal had until Dec. 31, 2004, to pay Lanham $1,400.

Renkal says on Nov. 9, 2004, Lanham went back to Magistrate Court and obtained a Writ of Possession for the apartment and evicted him without warning two weeks later.

He says Lanham did not provide him any notice or an opportunity to respond to the Writ of Possession.

Michael Del Guidice of Ciccarello, Del Guidice and LaFon in Charleston is representing Renkal, who seeks compensatory damages for the value of his lost and damaged property, emotional distress, annoyance and inconvenience.

He also seeks punitive damages.

Judge James Stucky has been assigned the case.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 06-C-1737

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