Sarasota News Leader

11/29/2013

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Sarasota News Leader November 29, 2013 OPINION Page 86 ATTORNEY IN SUNSHINE LAWSUIT DISPUTES CHAPMAN STATEMENTS TO THE CITY COMMISSION By Andrea Mogensen Guest Columnist GUEST COLUMN The recent Sarasota News Leader article dealing with the pending Government in the Sunshine lawsuit against the City of Sarasota contained some factual errors (Divide to conquer, Nov. 22). Chapman's attorney, Richard Harrison, attaching the correspondence referenced above and indicating that the offer was still on the table until 5 p.m. on Nov. 22. Harrison responded that he was no longer representing Chapman and would not respond to the "renewed" settlement offer ( See Exhibit 2). Clearly, Harrison No doubt, the errors were due to reprealready was aware of the earlier settlement sentations made at the City Commission offer, extended to both Atwell and Chapman, meeting last Monday by Commissioner Susan dated Nov. 1. Chapman, so I do not attribute it to any negligence on the part of the News Leader. I just Second, the article states, "Chapman then want to set the record straight. received an emergency injunction and was served with a set of 'interrogatories.' That First, the article states that Chapman was was followed with a request to set a schednot offered the same deal that Commissioner ule for depositions in the case. Atwell instead Suzanne Atwell was offered. This is flatly received an offer to settle the case, which she untrue. On Nov. 1, I extended the very same accepted." offer to both Atwell and Chapman to pay $500 to a charity of her choice in exchange for Attached as Exhibit 3 is the current docket being dropped from the lawsuit. That email in this case. No motion for emergency was conveyed from me to the city attorney injunction has ever been filed or served in and to counsel for both Chapman and Atwell this case. That representation is simply a fic( See Exhibit 1). As reported, Atwell took tion. Additionally, the request to schedule that deal just a few days later. depositions in the case occurred on Nov. 13 I would point out that, following the remarks ( See Exhibit 4) — nearly two weeks after of Chapman last Monday, in which she errone- the same settlement offer had been made to ously stated that the same deal had not been both Atwell and Chapman — because there offered to her, I again sent correspondence to had been no response or effort by Harrison

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