And They Built A Crooked House, by Ruth S. Martin

About the Names

Because we went to trial almost everything described in this book is a matter of public record. But is it fair to name everyone involved? We consulted over a dozen experts in several fields before the case was over. No one knew there would be a book about this case because we didn't know ourselves. These professionals tried their best to help us and for that we are grateful. They did not ask for publicity and to name them in this book would serve no useful purpose.

But what about the defendants? They chose to go to trial rather than fix our house; they never gave us any realistic option. Anyone could have walked into the courtroom at any time and heard the story as it unfolded. The result of the trial is not only a matter of public record, it has been reported in the newspapers.

However, there is no compelling reason to name the actual people involved, or to risk embarrassing innocent families. The men who desecrated our house operate in one small area of one county of this huge country. This book is really for homeowners and homebuyers everywhere because the problem we experienced defective residential construction happens all over. Who the players were in our particular case is not nearly so important as understanding how this nightmare can happen and how to prevent it.

It is with this reasoning that I have changed everyone's name in the case except mine and my husband's -- the plaintiffs. Fictitious names have been chosen (below) for their commonality and our complete ignorance of anyone with a similar name in the profession described. Any similarity of name to real people in these professions is purely a coincidence.

Martin, et. al, Plaintiffs, vs. Cooper, et. al. In the Court of Common Pleas, Cuyahoga County, Ohio

Jacob Cooper, real estate developer
Frank T. Murdock, builder (Frank T. Murdock Construction Co.)
James R. Nelson, architect (Nelson & Packard, Inc.)

ON THE SIDE OF THE DEFENDANTS (in alphabetical order)
Mitch Anderson, expert for insurance company
Tim Brown, one of Mr. Murdock's construction workers
Michael Collins, architect's attorney
Don Henderson, builder's insurance representative
Roger Jones, Mr. Pierce's associate
Frank Noble, developer's construction expert
Harold Pierce, builder's insurance company attorney
Mr. Rabin, Mr. Nelson's consulting engineer
Doug Webster, Mr. Cooper's attorney

ON THE SIDE OF THE PLAINTIFFS (in alphabetical order)
Bill Arrington, real estate agent
Charles Banks, structural engineer
Thomas J. Baxter, trial attorney
Gary Goldstein, attorney associate of Mr. Baxter's
A. Barry Marshall, construction expert
Brad Michaels, contract attorney in Mr. Baxter's firm
Melissa Oliver, junior litigator in Mr. Baxter's firm
Zack Schroeder, original contract attorney
Bill Sloan, structural engineer
Ralph, a contractor
Sam Russell, consulting architect
Skip Zimmerman, real estate appraiser