Oldsmar woman blames Blue Jays for $43,000 in condo damage

Video Courtesy of News Channel 8 -- Tampa

Published March 2, 2012

OLDSMAR -- A woman said wants the Toronto Blue Jays to pay for damages to her condominium caused by water from an overflowing bathtub in the unit above hers.

The damage occurred three years ago, when the upstairs unit was rented by the baseball team and occupied by three players, the woman said.

J. Spero, of Oldsmar, claims in a negligence lawsuit that her condo incurred $43,113 in damages when the water came through a light fixture in her ceiling.

"Somebody needs to make this right," she said.

Spero, who did not have insurance for the condo, said she hasn't lived in the unit since the damage occurred, and must wear protective equipment when entering. She still pays mortgage on the home and is staying with family members.

The Blue Jays were listed on the tenant statement as paying the rent, said her attorney, Hank Sorenson, and Spero wants the team to pay for the repairs.

The names of players staying in the unit were not available.

"In my opinion, the Toronto Blue Jays are responsible for this because it was an overflow of the tub caused by their employees for which they are listed on the property management company's invoice as the tenant," Sorenson said.

"They have not accepted responsibility for the fact they have a tenant with the existing owner nor are they saying that the occupants of the unit are even their employees."

The team would not discuss the lawsuit but issued a statement that said it respected the legal process and wanted to let the case run its course.

A plumber called to investigate believed the tub overflowed profusely for about one hour before anyone in the unit discovered the problem.

"It came down the wall so hard it went underneath the tiles in the bathroom. It went behind the wall and under the cabinets," Spero said.

The condo is owned by a man who lives out of state, and the company hired to manage the unit has since went out of business. Both are also named in the lawsuit, Sorenson said.

"I didn't do anything, so whoever feels the need to take responsibility, whether it's the Blue Jays, whether it's the owner," Spero said. "I didn't cause this."