CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) – An $857,000 lawsuit filed last fall against City Council member Amanda Newins by her great aunt will go to trial in November.
Shirley Davis originally claimed Newins took advantage of her and her late husband Bobby, who had advanced Alzheimer’s disease, financially and emotionally. Davis’ amended lawsuit now names Newins’ husband and an investment firm as co-defendants, and claims that Amanda Newins physically assaulted Bobby Davis shortly before his death.
In a statement Wednesday afternoon from her attorney Alison Zizzo to 10 On Your Side, Newins denied the allegations.
“We are glad that this case has finally been set for trial. We are confident that not only the evidence, but the Plaintiff’s own admissions, will refute these baseless allegations,” the statement said.
Shirley and Bobby Davis moved in with Newins in 2020 when Bobby was in advanced Alzheimer’s. Among the allegations: That Newins demanded $1,000 a month in rent, and isolated her great aunt and uncle by withholding his cell phone and her hearing aids and glasses; Newins would punish her uncle by forcing him to sit at the kitchen table until he finished dinner, sometimes as late as 11 p.m.; and Newins required that her aunt and uncle, who were in their 80s, to clean up the waste left behind by Newins’ four cats and two dogs.
The lawsuit also claims Newins had the Davises sign a power of attorney — that she then used to add her own name to the elderly couple’s numerous bank accounts; and that Newins gifted the couple’s Kempsville home to herself, worth an estimated $330,000.
Davis has now added to her allegations a claim that Amanda Newins physically assaulted Bobby Davis in March 2021 by pushing him to the floor. Davis also claims that instead of calling 911, she called her husband Brandon, a Chesapeake firefighter, who allegedly reported the incident as a male with low blood pressure.
Bobby Davis was transported to the hospital and died three weeks later.
Shirley Davis now lives with Debra Gregory, Davis’ niece and the mother of Amanda Newins. Gregory and Newins sat on opposite sides of the courtroom and did not seem to interact either inside or outside the courtroom.
The amended lawsuit also says Newins wrote a check to Shirley Davis for $94,000 once Davis got an attorney and demanded Newins return her property and money.
Davis’ attorneys are seeking financial records to follow the money allegedly stolen by Newins. Visiting Judge C. Peter Tench limited the time frame for those records to the period beginning January 1, 2020 thru September 9, 2022, the day the lawsuit was filed. Those limits were longer than what Newins wanted, and shorter than what Davis wanted.
“We are happy with the results of today’s hearing regarding disagreement over the scope of discovery,” Zizzo said in the statement. “I don’t want this to be a fishing expedition,” she had said in court.