Norfolk woman settles power pole dispute after filing $4 million lawsuit

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NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A $4 million power struggle lawsuit is now settled. 10 On Your Side has been following Norfolk resident Pat Richardson’s case since 2016.

“I have peace,” Richardson said.

For six years Richardson hadn’t felt that when she’s looked out her window and right at a power pole.

“I have had sleepless nights,” Richardson added.  “My family has been very supportive.”

The pole owned by Dominion Energy is on Richardson’s property, but T-Mobile was renting cell space on the tower.  A judge once ruled the pole can only be used for electricity and not cell service.

Richardson believed that was violating her rights, because T-Mobile was making money using her property, and Dominion was making money from T-Mobile, but Richardson wasn’t getting anything out of it.

In 2017, Richardson filed a $4 million suit against both companies, claiming T-Mobile was trespassing on her land.  A year later, the cell phone company’s equipment is gone and the case has been settled.

“I’m glad it’s over,” Richardson said.

Richardson isn’t able to disclose the terms of the settlement, but hopes other families who are in similar situations will gain confidence from her story.

“Someone who is going up against anything, I would just say to them ‘if you know your rights, just fight for your rights,'” Richardson added.

Richardson says she is now just ready for the next chapter.

“All matters have been resolved and they moved on and I’ve moved on,” Richardson said.

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