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The D Street Apartments at the corner of D and First streets in Salida remain unoccupied since being declared uninhabitable in May 2017. Former tenants who were forced to move have filed a lawsuit against the apartment owners (photo by Joe Stone).

Former tenants of the D Street Apartments have filed a class action civil lawsuit against the apartment owners – brothers John and William Mehos – and the property manager, Constantine Mehos, John Mehos’ son.

The plaintiffs’ attorneys, Matthew K. Hobbs and Kenneth A. Matthews of Salida, issued a statement acknowledging that they filed the lawsuit on behalf of nine former tenants and their children April 25 in Chaffee County District Court.

The lawsuit seeks damages, costs and attorneys’ fees “pursuant to the Colorado Premises Liability Act, breaches of the warranty of habitability, negligence, willful and wanton conduct, failure to return security deposits, unjust enrichment, and disgorgement.”

The lawsuit also asks the court to certify the nine plaintiffs as “representative of a larger, unknown class of former tenants at the D Street Apartments.”

All tenants residing at the D Street Apartments on May 2, 2017, were forced to move from their homes after the city of Salida determined that the apartments were unsafe to occupy due to multiple municipal code violations.

Public documents indicate a Salida Fire Department investigation of a reported gas odor revealed several code violations.

Further investigation by county health, safety and compliance agencies confirmed the severity of the situation, and the building was declared uninhabitable.

The code violations included no heat in the apartments, raw sewage leaking in basement, no hot water, and rodent and insect infestations, including bedbugs.

Multiple charges were filed against the three Mehoses in Salida Municipal Court, and those charges are still pending, following a three-month continuance granted in April.

As a class action lawsuit, the case can be joined by current or former tenants of the Mehoses, and the attorneys offer complete confidentiality to anyone who wishes to contact them about the case.

Constantine Mehos could not be reached for comment at the time this article was posted.