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Sullivan commission OKs $100K-plus settlement in home-burning lawsuit

November 21st, 2013 9:48 pm by J. H. Osborne

Sullivan commission OKs $100K-plus settlement in home-burning lawsuit

In this April 2011 photo, a member of the Sullivan County Volunteer Fire Department walks past the mobile home that was destroyed following a standoff with law enforcement officials. (Erica Yoon photo)

BLOUNTVILLE — Sullivan County taxpayers will pay two women $100,000 — and the county’s insurance company will contribute about $20,000 more — to end a lawsuit stemming from the burning of a home during a police standoff, according to a settlement agreement worked out over the past week.

The Sullivan County Commission’s Executive Committee unanimously approved acceptance of the settlement offer Thursday.

That agreement says the two women — mother and daughter Margaret Spradlin and Shirley Brewer — will be paid $110,000 and, in addition, the county will pay $5,500 for removal of the remnants of the home. The county also will foot the bill for court costs, which County Attorney Dan Street said he doesn’t expect to exceed $1,000.

Along with the county’s other expenses on the case, it brings the total cost to about $122,500. Insurance will reimburse the county for anything over $100,000.

The case is scheduled to go to court in January. Once the agreement is signed by both parties and the plaintiffs are paid, the lawsuit will be withdrawn.

The $1.5 million lawsuit was filed by Spradlin and Brewer in U.S. District Court in Greeneville in April 2012.

For an expanded version of this article, please see Friday's print edition or our electronic edition.

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