Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Perry v. Town of Putnam

Appellate Court of Connecticut

February 2, 2016

JOHN PERRY ET AL.
v.
TOWN OF PUTNAM

         Argued October 22, 2015

          Action to recover damages for the defendant's alleged nuisance, and for other relief, brought to the Superior Court in the judicial district of Windham at Putnam, where the court, Boland, J., granted the defendant's motion to strike the plaintiffs' amended complaint; thereafter, the court, Calmar, J., granted the plaintiffs' motion for judgment and rendered judgment thereon, from which the plaintiffs appealed to this court.

          Affirmed.

          SYLLABUS

         The plaintiff property owners sought, inter alia, injunctive relief in connection with the defendant town's alleged creation of a nuisance. In their amended complaint, the plaintiffs alleged that the defendant created a nuisance by locating a parking lot for its athletic facilities on a portion of its property that was adjacent to the plaintiffs' residential property, rather than locating it on some other portion of its property. They alleged a number of annoyances that emanated from the parking lot that they claimed denied them the full use and enjoyment of their property, including vehicle noise, littering of automotive parts, assorted criminal activity, loud music, and headlights shining directly into their residence. The defendant filed a motion to strike the plaintiffs' complaint, claiming that it did not state a legally viable cause of action for nuisance under the statute (§ 52-557n [a] [C]) that imposes liability on a municipality when its acts constitute the creation or the participation in the creation of a nuisance. The trial court granted the motion to strike, concluding that the complaint did not state a cause of action for nuisance because it failed to allege sufficient facts with respect to several essential elements of the tort. Specifically, the court stated that the complaint failed to allege that the parking lot had a natural tendency to create danger and to inflict injury on a person or property, that the defendant's use of its property was unreasonable or unlawful, or that the claimed nuisance was the proximate cause of the plaintiffs' injuries. The trial court rendered judgment in favor of the defendant, from which the plaintiffs appealed to this court. Held that the trial court properly granted the defendant's motion to strike, the plaintiffs' complaint having failed to allege sufficient facts to support a cause of action for nuisance under § 52-557n (a) (1) (C): although the complaint alleged various unpleasant activities that emanated from the parking lot, under Connecticut law, a parking lot does not have a natural tendency to create danger and to inflict injury on a person or property; moreover, the defendant's use of its property as a parking lot to serve its athletics facilities and its locating the parking lot in the vicinity of those facilities and adjacent to residential property was not unreasonable or unlawful, as the building of a public parking lot is a quintessential municipal function, the parking lot needed to be in proximity to the facilities it was intended to serve, and it is common knowledge that parking lots regularly abut residential areas; furthermore, the allegations in the complaint could not support a finding that the defendant affirmatively acted to create the nuisance that caused the plaintiffs' injuries because the defendant's decision to locate and construct the parking lot on the portion of its property that was adjacent to the plaintiffs' property did not create or participate in the creation of the alleged nuisance but, rather, the acts giving rise to the annoyances of which the plaintiffs complained were those of third parties who used the parking lot.

         Michael D. O'Connell, with whom, on the brief, was Erin Arcesi Mutty, for the appellants (plaintiffs).

         Melinda A. Powell, with whom was William H. St. Onge, for the appellee (defendant).

         Lavine, Beach and Norcott, Js.

          OPINION

Page 1285

         [162 Conn.App. 761] NORCOTT, J.

         This appeal from the judgment of the trial court rendered on the granting of a motion to strike raises the issue of whether the plaintiffs' complaint alleged facts sufficient to support a cause of action for [162 Conn.App. 762] nuisance. We conclude that it did not, and, accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

         The plaintiffs, John Perry and Patricia Perry, claim on appeal that the act of the defendant, the town of Putnam, of locating a parking lot on a portion of the its property immediately adjacent to the plaintiffs' property satisfied the affirmative act requirement of General Statutes § 52-557n (a) (1) (C).[1] The plaintiffs argue that their allegations of the relative positions of their property and the parking lot also satisfied the " natural tendency to create danger and inflict injury" and " unreasonable or unlawful" use elements of a nuisance cause of action. See Picco v. Town of Voluntown, 295 Conn. 141, 146, 989 A.2d 593 (2010). The plaintiffs also argue that the " offensive and nefarious activities" that occurred on the parking lot proximately caused their injuries and resulted in excessive interference with their full use and enjoyment of their property. The defendant counters that the behavior to which the plaintiffs referred in their complaint was not properly

Page 1286

attributable to the defendant, and further argues that the plaintiffs did not allege facts adequate to support the remaining elements of a cause of action for ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.