Officials in one Somerset County community are taking legal action against the owners of a mobile home park that’s been targeted by a serial arsonist.
Somerset Borough officials are suing the owner of Cherry Lane Estates mobile home park, Divinity Investments, LLC. Two lawsuits were filed on September 14.
The first claims that the Chambersburg based company, who’s owned the park since 2014, owes the borough more than $320,000 in unpaid water and sewer bills.
The second lawsuit claims that divinity “willfully neglected the condition of the park” both before and after 13 arsons & two attempted arsons since May of this year. The suspect in those arsons is still on the loose.
In court documents, Somerset Officials say, “The unsecured remains of the fire-damaged or destroyed mobile homes create a haven for vagrants, unauthorized persons… And hazardous condition for the remaining residents of the park…”
That’s why Somerset wants divinity to tear down and remove 14 burnt homes and secure the rest of the vacant ones.
Borough policy prohibits Borough Manager Michele Enos from commenting on the lawsuits, referring WTAJ News to the borough’s solicitor. However, Enos did say that Somerset officials estimated it would cost about $5 to 10,000 to remove each burnt home.
Both the Somerset Borough Solicitor and Divinity Investments, could not be reached for a comment.
According to the lawsuits, Divinity Investments has 20 days to respond to the water and sewer bill lawsuit and 30 days to cleanup all the fire-damaged homes and secure the rest of the vacant mobile homes at Cherry Lane Estates.