Hideaway Hills homeowners granted preliminary lawsuit victory

The 4th Circuit Court has granted a victory for some of the Hideaway Hills homeowners by rejecting the state's earlier Motion to Dismiss.
Published: Oct. 19, 2022 at 7:37 PM CDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - It’s been more than two years since some of the homeowners in the Hideaway Hills community had to evacuate . On Wednesday, the lawyer for many of those homeowners announced they would finally be able to put a case together.

The 4th Circuit Court granted a victory for the homeowners by rejecting the state’s earlier filed ‘Motion to Dismiss.’ The verdict allows homeowners represented by John Fitzgerald to proceed against the state as individual actions instead of joining a class action suit. Meaning, after more than two years, around 160 of the homeowners’ who signed with Fitzgerald Law Firm will be able to have their day in court.

“So, this is the court saying ‘you do have a case,’” said lawyer John Fitzgerald. “We started trying to have a case in June of 2020, and it seems like it had been kind of roadblock after roadblock.”

Hideaway Hills is a subdivision in Black Hawk that was built over an old gypsum mine. When part of the underground mine collapsed, it left residents with massive mortgages and homes they can’t live in or sell.

Frustrations arose after homeowners believed Meade County forgot about them.

“They were all there when the news was there and then all of a sudden, after it settled down for a couple of weeks, they all left and never heard from them again,” said Hideaway Hills homeowner Albert Reitz.

According to Fitzgerald Law Firm, the hope is before the first of the year a court order would hold the state liable, and the firm would continue their fight. Some homeowners are still working with other law firms to get their claims resolved.