I am still hesitant to explain all of the ramifications of the jury trial just concluded. While the jury overwhelmingly penalized Michael McFarland for paying less for his 50% interest than it was represented to be worth, the contest isn't over yet.
No judgement has been entered, and actually, may not be. Two issues that face the judge now, are whether the jury used evidence offered during the trial, or sympathy for the widow of Jerry Berry.If the judge believes the preponderance of evidence that the big bad lawyer didn't screw anyone out of anything, he can set aside the jury's verdict. He can also declare a mistrial.
Somehow, the jury was convinced that the value of the 'Wheel was over one million dollars. Maybe that was true in 2006 when the market bubble hadn't broke yet, but realistically, getting $600,000 for the place now would be a stretch. McFarland paid $100,000 for 50% of the equity in the business in 2003. Berry, just three years earlier, paid $50,000 for the same amount of stock.
There has been so much false information and erroneous rumor, I felt I had to straighten out at least some of the misinformation. As the old saying goes, "It ain't over 'till the fat lady sings." Once a final judgement is reached, and any appeals are finished, the problem of this debt ridden business being able to open regardless of which party wins, looms over the place. I personally don't think it will survive and the bones that are being fought over will prove to be less than valuable. I wish both parties well, and I grieve over this battle that didn't ever have to be fought, were it not the overriding greed of one of the litigants.
Parting Shot -- 5.23.13
11 hours ago