In 2007, Jon Whitman lost a lawsuit against Bedford Township. Here is the Bedford Township response to the lawsuit and the judge's final decision.
Some highlights of the lawsuit:
Mr. Lennex, the real estate agent selling the commercial property, acknowledged that he would have earned a sale commission of $225,000 for the sale of the Whitman property to Wal-Mart.
The Indian Acres subdivision was well established before the construction of the Whitman automobile dealership. Judge Costello wrote, "Since the very beginning the western-most portion of the property was zoned residential. The township has remained consistent in maintaining this classification."
Julie Johnston, a planning consultant for Wade-Trim and Associates testified that a big-box store would have a “major impact on the neighborhood.” She further indicated that it would be difficult to screen or buffer the store from the surrounding properties.
Dennis Jenkins, Community Development and Planning Coordinator, indicated that he did not believe the Master Plan discouraged commercial development as long as it did not have a “significant” impact on the community.
David Landry, the lawyer representing Bedford Township said, "You are talking about the development of large-scale retail right next door, literally, to a longstanding subdivision."