Lawsuit over former car dealership settled
September 28, 2016
A lawsuit between a former Minden car dealer and the family who owns the property has been settled.
Barring an appeal, Michael Hohl and Carson Valley Chevrolet will have to pay the Hellwinkel family $413,905 for damage done to the former C.O.D. car lot in Minden.
District Judge Tod Young signed the judgment after hearing from both parties during April and August.
Michael Hohl purchased the Carson Valley Chevrolet dealership March 1, 2007, according to court documents. The Chevrolet dealer had owned the dealership since it purchased it from the C.O.D. Motor Co. in 2003.
Hohl closed the dealership in 2012.
The Hellwinkels retained ownership of the property at 1601 Highway 395.
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According to the judgment, the sublease agreement required that Hohl maintain the property and return to the property in the same condition it was received on Dec. 18, 2003, when it was only a decade old.
Both Robb and Marlena Hellwinkel conducted frequent visits to the property over the duration of Hohl's tenancy.
According to court documents, they both observed new environmental spills.
Hellwinkel signed a release in December 2013 dealing with rents and a noncompete clause, but that did not release Hohl from the terms of the sublease.
Damages to the property were set at $284,079, however Young decided not to triple the damages.
Remediation of damage to the property was set at $135,638, but the cost of the carpet in the building which was only supposed to last a decade was subtracted to make the total.
"Compensatory damages are awarded to make the aggrieved party whole and where contracts are involved, these damages should place the plaintiffs in the position they would have been in had the contract not been breached," the judgment.
The property is being listed for lease with the Hone Co.
In a 1993 story about the construction of the dealership, The Record-Courier reported it was the oldest continuing family operated franchise in Nevada.
The dealership was owned in 1912 by Clarence Oliver Dangberg, youngest son to H.F. Dangberg. He employed a mechanic named of Fred Hellwinkel, paying him in stock until in 1919, when Hellwinkel became an equal partner.
Chevrolet had the dealership on record from April 1922.
The original dealership is now home to the COD Casino in Minden.