Woman says apartment owners invaded her privacy

By Cara Bailey | Sep 19, 2008

CHARLESTON - A Kanawha County woman has filed a suit against the owners of the apartment complex where she lives, claiming they invaded her privacy and were negligent in maintaining her apartment.

Barbara Dingess filed the suit Aug. 7 in Kanawha Circuit Court against Carriage Hill and the Housing Development Corporation.

Carriage Hill owns an apartment complex known as Carriage Hill Apartments, which is located near St. Albans. Dingess moved into the apartment in January 2007 after signing a 12-month lease.

According to the suit, after moving into the apartment, Dingess began to notice and experience many problems including shelves falling, malfunctioning heat, holes in the floor, water leakage, rodent and insect infiltration, cracks in the living room floor, electrical and wiring problems and other issues.

Dingess claims in July 2007, she was injured when metal shelves in her walk-in closet fell on her, causing her to fall on her carpet cleaner. She claims she told the management office about the loose shelves and was told by a maintenance man that he could not repair the shelves unless they fell out of the wall.

In August 2007, someone went into Dingess' home and altered documents in her personal computer, the suit says. Dingess claims someone from Carriage Hill had to have entered her home without her permission because no one else had keys.

In the 10-count suit, Dingess claims she suffered an invasion of privacy and suffered personal injuries and emotional distress. She seeks compensatory and punitive damages.

Attorney Steven B. Wiley is representing Dingess. The case has been assigned to Judge Tod Kaufman.

Kanawha Circit Court case number 08-C-1516

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