The owners of a Chicago-style restaurant are suing a former Durango landlord, claiming wrongful eviction after a dispute over when septic pumping should occur.
Chicago Nicks operated from September 2006 through May 2010 at the Four Star Exxon, 1220 Carbon Junction.
The owners, Nick and Paula Mikhail, rented space from Brennan Stations Inc., which owns the service station across from Walmart.
Their business arrangement came to an abrupt end May 29 after a disagreement about when septic pumping should take place.
According to a four-page civil complaint filed in 6th Judicial District Court, the Brennan family hired a septic pump service to pump out the septic tanks at the service station during the lunch hour May 29.
The result was a horrific, intolerable odor just as Chicago Nicks was opening for lunch, the lawsuit says.
Nick Mikhail asked the septic truck driver to leave and come back the next day when Chicago Nicks would be closed. The driver agreed, saying there wouldnt be any problem in doing so, according to the lawsuit.
But Kelly Brennan insisted that the septic pumping take place immediately, according to the lawsuit. When Mikhail protested, Brennan immediately responded that Chicago Nicks is out of here.
The Brennan family declined to comment Wednesday for this story.
Chicago Nicks did not have a written lease with the Brennan family, Mikhail said Wednesday during a phone interview.
They told me, youre family, he said. We dont need to do a lease. So, basically, it was a verbal thing.
Durango lawyer Paul Whistler, who represents Chicago Nicks, declined to comment about the lawsuit other than to say the lease was verbal.
In its lawsuit, Chicago Nicks indicates it will seek in excess of $100,000. Whistler did not return a second phone call inquiring about the punitive damages being sought.
Mikhail said he still lives in Durango, but he no longer operates Chicago Nicks.
That was our livelihood, he said of the restaurant. We poured everything we had into that place. For them to come in and take it away in one hour, that is what happened.