Auto Body Shop Owner Goes To Court Over Route 28 Expansion Project
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — All you need to do is look at Route 28 traffic to see why there is a Route 28 expansion project.
One of the last businesses on Route 28 is set to close by Oct. 1, but the owner refuses and has decided to take his fight downtown to court.
“I’m getting screwed over. I just told the county police I’m not gonna fight with them when they come down to my building,” says body shop owner, William Lieberth. “They’re going to evict me. I know they are. That’s why I didn’t even dress up for them.”
Allegheny Auto Body is still an active business along Route 28; however, time may be running out.
Lieberth has been offered as much as $245,000 to move his business, but given the percentage of attorney’s fees and no guarantee he can relocate close by, he doesn’t think that is quite enough.
Lieberth is also locked in a dispute with his former lawyer and PennDOT over whether an agreement was already executed.
Both PennDOT and Leiberth’s former lawyer say he agreed to the $245,000 settlement.
In court, Lieberth interrupted his former lawyer’s testimony saying that the settlement was never established. He was admonished by Judge Michael McCarthy who ordered him to wait his turn.
“That’s why I fired him Aug. 22. They tried to get me to sign it. I said I’m not going to sign it. I just told you in court; now it’s recorded. I didn’t authorize him to put the $245,000 on the price,” Leiberth says.
Judge Michael McCarthy now has to decide whether he agreed to a settlement.
Most legal experts think no matter what, it won’t be long before Allegheny Auto Body is no longer on Route 28.
“I’ve been there 37 years. My son’s been there 18 years. We’re the only shop on the North Shore. We’re serving the whole community,” Leiberth says. “No more body shop and it’s the same old thing. PennDOT doesn’t care. They don’t care that I’m the last shop.”
Judge Michael McCarthy is expected to make his decision on Monday.