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Family’s home pummeled by golf balls. Country club owes $5M

A judge awarded a family nearly $5 million after their home was hit by several golf balls from nearby Indian Pond Country club's course.  They won their lawsuit.

A judge awarded a family nearly $5 million after their home was hit by several golf balls from nearby Indian Pond Country club’s course. They won their lawsuit.

Robert Galvin

A country club owes a family nearly $5 million after their home was pummeled by hundreds of golf balls for years from the nearby course in Massachusetts, a judge has decided.

At least 651 golf balls struck their property over a period of a few years, several of which smashed through windows of the Tenczar family’s home located on the 15th tee at Indian Pond Country club in Kingston, according to a news release from the family’s lawyer, Robert Galvin. After attempts at working with the club owners failed, they filed a lawsuit in 2018.

A Plymouth County Superior judge awarded the family $4.9 million for emotional distress and property damages after a jury sided with the family in December, Galvin confirmed to McClatchy News.

Indian Pond Country Club filed to appeal the judge’s decision on March 15, Galvin said. McClatchy News contacted the country club’s attorney for comment on April 27.

In 2017, Erik and Athina Tenczar bought their home “before the golf course was designed and constructed” at Indian Pond Country Club, Galvin’s news release said. They soon found themselvesunder the continuous threat of golf ball strikes” at their home purchased for $750,000, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit argued that the owner of the country club never notified the Tenczars that their “home and yard fell within an area that golf balls regularly entered the yard.”

“The golf ball strikes” prevented the Tenczars “from the use and enjoyment of their property,” the lawsuit said. The balls have “caused repeated property damage” including “broken windows and damage to their deck.” They still need to have 26 windows replaced, as well as two walls of siding, which have been battered by the golf balls, according to the news release.

EX.  13D Broken Window 04_14_2019_1_fitted.jpeg
In this photo, one of the Tenczar family’s broken windows caused by a golf ball is seen, according to attorney Robert Galvin. This photo was used as evidence in the Tenczar’s lawsuit against Indian Pond Country club. Robert Galvin

The complaint described how golf balls hurled towards the Tenczars’ home stopped them from regularly using their deck and yard, “including as a play area” for their child. The balls would even hit their driveway where they’d park their cars.

The couple was “immensely impacted from an emotional perspective by the safety issues,” Galvin’s news release said.

The family’s attorney told McClatchy News that “the Tenczars tried to work directly with the course owner to solve the problem for over a year before the suit and were unable to resolve the case despite significant efforts to do so and the relatively small expense to correct the issue.”

The family said in their lawsuit that they asked the club to install protective netting around their property or make adjustments to the course to prevent golfers from directing balls toward their home, requests they said went unresolved.

The country club’s lawyer told NewsCenter 5 that golf ball damages are an expected potential risk of living near the golf course.

However, Indian Pond has temporarily changed the par for the hole near the family’s home while looking into a more permanent solution, according to the station.

“This was most importantly never about the money for the Tenczars, we didn’t sue for 5M,” Galvin emphasized in the news release. “We mainly sued to force the club to solve the problem and protect them.”

“We remain optimistic that the verdict and judgment will be upheld on appeal.”

Julia Marnin is a McClatchy National Real-Time reporter covering the southeast and northeast while based in New York. She’s an alumna of The College of New Jersey and joined McClatchy in 2021. Previously, she’s written for Newsweek, Modern Luxury, Gannett and more.

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