Attorneys for the Town of Strasburg have asked the court to dismiss a lawsuit filed by Bock’s Garage last year.

On April 24, 2018, a water main broke in town, allegedly flooding Bock’s Garage, causing thousands of dollars in damages and forcing the auto repair shop to close while it performed repairs. Last year, Bock’s Garage claimed the town failed to maintain the water pipe and the break amounted to trespass by the town and amounted to the town taking its property. Bock’s Garage is seeking $106,863.

On Dec. 23, Strasburg filed its first response to the suit answering the complaint, filing a demurrer — requesting the suit be thrown out — and moving for a change of venue from the Warren County Circuit Court to Shenandoah County.

Bock’s Garage claimed the town took its property without paying for it — known as inverse condemnation. The town argued in its response that it did not take any property for a public purpose.

“The common thread in inverse condemnation cases is that the purposeful act or omission causing the taking of, or damage to, private property was for a public use,” the demurrer states.

The town relied on its point that it did not take any property from Bock’s Garage to ask the court to dismiss the suit with prejudice, keeping it from cropping up again later.

If the court does not dismiss the case, the town also requested the venue move from Warren County to Shenandoah County where both the town and the business are located.

“Virtually every aspect of this case is tied to Shenandoah County,” the town’s request for a venue change states. “It is not even apparent why the case was filed in Warren County, it appears to be a type based on the allegations in Paragraph 6 of the Complaint.”

Paragraph six of the complaint states that the venue of Warren County is proper for both parties because Shenandoah County is where both Bock’s Garage and the town are located.

Strasburg admitted there was a water line break on April 24, 2018, and that it was responsible for the pipes but denied any claims of negligence wrongdoing. If the suit is not dismissed, the town demanded a trial by jury.

– Contact Max Thornberry at mthornberry@nvdaily.com