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December 18, 2014
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Community reserve may not be pierced; court sides with Beechwood over developer


The Boymelgreens also argued that because, early on in the process, some members of the Beechwood community acquiesced and temporarily agreed with Boymelgreens’ interpretation of the various deeds involved, Beechwood residents should now be prevented from arguing otherwise. But the court wrote, “the Boymelgreens cannot take advantage of their own false statements and baseless claims to Beechwood by turning themselves into the victims of their own statements and claims.”

Well before the ruling, in spring of 2011, the Bethel Planning Board issued a temporary permit to the Boymelgreens, which caused the Beechwood residents to go to court to prove that Boymelgreen did not have the right to do what he wanted to do.

Beechwood resident Frances Randazzo said that the planning board could have followed other courses, such as requiring Boymelgreen to prove he had the right to cross the reserve, rather than forcing the residents to prove he did not.

Beechwood residents overwhelmingly voted on an assessment to pay for legal bills and to reimburse two members who incurred legal costs early on; but the costs for the small community are ongoing and, if Boymelgreen appeals the lower court decision, those costs will go higher still.