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Monday, May 27, 2024 | Back issues
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Woman Says Co-op Election Got Out of Hand

CHICAGO (CN) - A candidate for a co-op apartment's board of directors stabbed a woman as she counted the votes, the vote-counter claims in court.

Madronicia Clarke claims Dave Thomas threatened to kill her and then stabbed her at a Drexel Cooperative Apartments board meeting on East 49th Street, on Chicago's South Side.

She sued Thomas, Sheila Hermanzinski, the Drexel Cooperative Apartment Corporation and its Board of Directors, in Cook County Court.

Clarke, a Drexel Co-op shareholder, says she was asked to count the votes for the board of directors election in March 2012.

"While counting the votes, Board Member David Thomas, who was running for re-election to the Drexel Cooperative Apartments Corporation Board of Directors, menaced and intimidated plaintiff, including threatening to kill plaintiff," the complaint states.

"The Chicago Police Department was called and remained throughout the meeting and defendant Thomas was compelled to cease and desist from his intimidation activities."

At the April meeting, to install the newly elected board members, Thomas verbally assaulted her, Clarke claims.

"The Board of Director's President, John Wyatt, told defendant Thomas that 'we are not going there,'" the complaint states.

It continues: "Defendant Thomas became increasingly agitated and thereafter stood up and appeared as if he was going to hit plaintiff with his cane.

"Several of the Board of Directors told defendant Thomas to sit down and be quiet.

"Defendant Thomas initially sat down but continued to rant and rail against plaintiff.

"Defendant Thomas became further agitated and infuriated screaming obscenities and again threatening to kill plaintiff.

"Defendant Thomas soon thereafter stood up and began a physical attack on plaintiff.

"During the attack defendant Thomas stabbed and slashed plaintiff with a knife.

"Plaintiff was taken to the hospital and treated for her injuries.

"Upon information and belief, defendant Hermacinski thereafter transported and concealed the knife used in the attack on plaintiff."

Clarke accuses the co-op of failing to provide security at the board meeting.

She seeks damages for battery, willful and wanton conduct, and negligence.

She is represented by Wade Arends with Arends & Callahan.

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