Real estate broker claims neighbor slandered her

Ann Knef Oct. 24, 2006, 10:55am

A Smithton real estate broker is suing her Heartland Oaks subdivision neighbor for slander.

According to a lawsuit filed Oct. 23 in St. Clair County Circuit Court, Geraldine A. Davidson claims Wendy Dribben injured her good reputation by calling her a "snake" and a "liar" to third parties.

Davidson claims Dribben's remarks caused a real estate transaction, in which she would have collected at least an $80,000 fee, to collapse.

The suit also claims Dribben told another neighbor in the Heartland Oaks subdivision that Davidson had "illegally developed the Heartland Oaks subdivision dam so as to purposely create liability on the Dribben property when it became discovered that the lake and dam were not permitted by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources."

"That Wendy Dribben has committed slander against the good reputation of Geraldine Davidson, and has done so in intentional and reckless disregard of the truth, and as such should be punished for this outrageous conduct," the complaint states.

Davidson, represented by Timothy J. Bates of Belleville, seeks at least $50,000 in compensatory damages, plus exemplary damages "in an amount sufficient to advise Defendant and others that engaging in such conduct is reprehensible, and will not be tolerated in the community."

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