South Dakota man fights to preserve family barn amid dispute
PUKWANA, S.D. (AP) — A South Dakota man is fighting several legal battles to preserve his family’s nearly century-old barn in a central county amid a dispute with relatives.
Bret Healy recently spoke to Brule County commissioners to request that they keep his family barn from being taken down by his brother, Bryce Healy, The Daily Republic reported . The 53-year-old is involved in a civil case to determine how much of a claim he has on the barn.
But Bret Healy isn’t allowed on the barn property after he was charged with simple assault last year over an incident with his other brother, Barry Healy, and sister-in-law, Brandy Healy, who live by the barn. Bret Healy said the incident was exaggerated.
More than a year after the alleged assault took place, Bryce Healy posted on Facebook that he would be dismantling the barn and selling its wood.
Healy’s attorney, Chris McClure, said he thinks the post was aimed at trying to provoke Bret Healy.
Both Bryce and Barry Healy declined to comment.
Bret Healy, who legally cannot go near the barn, has appealed to the state Supreme Court, the police, the Brule County Commission and even insurance companies over the barn dispute.
“I’m trying to protect my family legacy and that 99-year-old barn that represents that legacy,” Healy said.
Deputy State’s Attorney David Larson said Healy’s conflicts lie with his family but he’s trying to drag more people into it.
Information from: The Daily Republic, http://www.mitchellrepublic.com