Jury awards $850,000 for house taken for drawbridge

The Lagoon Drawbridge just cost the state an additional $600,000. - Kristofer Rabasca

The state agreed this week to cut a check for $600,220.73 to settle a three-year court battle between the Holloman family and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. In a letter dated Nov. 1, Kendra Kinschief, an assistant attorney general who represented the state agency in the lawsuit, agreed to the payment, based on a jury award days earlier. The check this week subtracted from the $850,000 settlement amount the sum of $260,295.27, which the state had already paid the Hollomans when their house was taken by eminent domain to make way for the new Lagoon drawbridge. The judgment was made official Thursday.

According to court documents, the Hollomans first purchased the two-bedroom summer cottage in 1962. Eventually, the family added two additional bedrooms to the cottage and referred to the seasonal home as their “sanctuary,” records indicate.

The jury trial lasted four days in Dukes County Superior Court before jurors awarded $850,000 for Charlotte Holloman, who filed suit in 2014 with her mother, Charlotte W. Holloman, who died in 2015. The $850,000 was considered the fair market value of the property as of 2012.

According to the judgment document, the Hollomans were awarded $10,516 in interest, as well.

Judge Gary Nickerson presided over the trial.

While the suit was filed in 2014, the battle between the state and the Hollomans dates back to the early stages of the project. The family was first approached in 2001, though the state appeared to back off plans to take the house at one point, records indicate.