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Former mayor suing Warren

WARREN — The former mayor of Warren is suing it for damage done to his home that he claims was a result of the city’s negligence, according to a civil case filed in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court.

Henry “Hank” Angelo claims in the suit he was away during the 2017-18 winter and even though he was up to date on his city water bill at his 195 Oak Knoll NE home, his water was shut off.

Angelo, mayor from 1996 through 2004, states the the damage to the house, his inability to live in the home and other expenses he incurred as a result of the damage has given him “personal annoyance, frustration, embarrassment, anger and other discomfort,” according to the suit.

Having the water off during some of winter’s coldest months caused the boiler system in the two-story brick house to shut down because there was no water feeding into it, allowing water left in the 16 radiators that typically heat the house to freeze and burst. The waterlines to the sinks, tubs and toilets also burst. As the winter temperatures went from warm to freezing to warm again, water damaged floors, walls, ceilings, furniture and appliances, according to Tribune Chronicle archives.

Enzo Cantalamessa, the city’s safety service director, said he cannot comment on pending litigation.

Angelo states in the suit he had to live in a hotel from January until August while repairs were made. He states he had to pay $30,601 for restoration. Insurance covered other costs, according to newspaper archives.

Franco Lucarelli, director of the city’s water department, said in 2018 the Angelo house was tagged at least two times to let the owner or occupant know the department needed to check his meters, but there was no response. Lucarelli said previously it is the department’s policy to shut off water service if the department does not get a response. And that is what happened to Angelo.

Angleo said in 2018 he tried to respond to the tags and thought the situation was taken care of.

There were 635 tags placed on the doors of water department customers in 2017 and all but 11 of them responded, preventing their water from being shut off, Lucarelli told Warren City Council in 2018.

Council’s utilities committee was to look into creating or reviewing written policies for how to handle cases like Angelo’s in the future, according to Tribune Chronicle archives.

rfox@tribtoday.com

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