Brunswick judge absolves old hotel owner of $20,000 in fines

A St. Simons Island businessman will not have to pay some $20,000 in fines levied by the city on a dilapidated property on U.S. 17 just inside the city’s northern limit.

John Dow, principal in the limited liability company that owns the property, said he felt vindicated after Municipal Court Judge Lakin Andrew let him off the hook for the fines Wednesday and dismissed the case against him.

“You’ve been through a lot, Mr. Dow,” Lakin said.

Dow, who also serves as chairman of Glynn County’s Island Planning Commission, said he was publicly pilloried in the local media after the city cited him in September over the condition of the property. Formerly a hotel, the property had fallen into a state of disrepair and was cluttered with debris.

Had he not been on the Island Planning Commission, the citation would have gone unnoticed, he said.

Assistant City Attorney Brian Corry told the court that Dow was right in not paying the fine or responding to the city’s citation immediately because it had been improperly addressed to him as an individual and not to the D4 Enterprises LLC, the company that holds title to the property.

“It’s clear that D4 LLC is the proper owner,” Corry said.

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