After a truly dramatic legal battle over the past couple of weeks, the nearby residents who filed a lawsuit against Third Ward restaurant the Turkey Leg Hut over its smokers have decided to “suspend” the suit.
A statement from Feldman and Feldman, the law firm that represented the plaintiffs in this matter, indicates that the group of six Turkey Leg Hut Neighbors will not pursue further legal action — for now — in an effort to “give the Turkey Leg Hut owners one last chance to get in compliance with the law and finally become good neighbors,” a statement sent out on Monday morning says. The residents say that the suit can be resumed if “public health, nuisance, and regulatory issues persist.”
For those who missed the news, the Turkey Leg Hut was slapped with a lawsuit alleging that its “noxious” smoke was flooding into the homes of its Third Ward neighbors. The suit also included a variety of noise and nuisance complaints, but the real focus was the smoke. Photos included with the plaintiffs’ original petition for the suit depicted living rooms filled with smoke, while others claimed that they were suffering from serious breathing issues related to the smoke. In response, Turkey Leg Hut owners Lynn and Nakia Price vehemently denied the claims and described the lawsuit as “defamatory.”
The Turkey Leg Hut issued its own statement on Monday, claiming victory and saying that the lawsuit filed against them was “dropped.” “From the moment we were engaged, we suspected this was not about smoke but rather about forcing the Turkey Leg Hut out of its location,” Turkey Leg Hut attorney Jane Robinson said in a statement. “We were not about to let that happen. We are pleased that these neighbors have elected to drop the suit quickly and proud to have had the opportunity to fight for Turkey Leg Hut.”
Owners Lynn and Nakia Price say that their restaurant is in “full compliance with all ordinances, permits, and health codes for operation in the City of Houston,” according to that statement. That’s a fact that the plaintiffs in the lawsuit continue to dispute, but it does seem as if the two sides have at least forged a path forward to co-existence without the help of the courts.