Anita Lee filed this report on Lisanby v USAA. As I like to observe, the ironies are delicious. State Farm customer Mike Church is also a satisfied wind customer. After following Aiken v USAA (Judge Senter’s courtroom) early this year I can’t help but think that if this is the best the Admiral has in terms of evidence, he may very well be disappointed in the juries findings. Here is the Anita Lee report:
Satisfied State Farm customer Mike Church testified this afternoon for a Pascagoula couple who is suing their insurance company, USAA, over uncovered Katrina damage.
Church, his wife and youngest son were in their home on Big Lake, which feeds into Biloxi’s Back Bay, when Katrina hit on Aug. 29, 2005. He testified about all the damage the wind did to the home before 3 to 4 feet of water surged in.
Structural damage, he said, was confined to the first floor of the two-story house. The wind knocked out windows, French doors and the plywood covering them on the home’s south side. Plywood and debris blew in.
The family fled upstairs because of the explosions and flying debris. Water later surged in.
The first adjuster who visited the house told Church only damage above the water line would be covered.
When Church objected, the adjuster said Church should call his State Farm agent. The agent sent out a second adjuster, a catastrophe manager, Church testified. An engineer accompanied the catastrophe manager.
They heard Church’s story and also looked at a swath of destruction around the house that Church said was a tornado line. The State Farm manager then agreed that there was covered wind damage to the first floor and garage, Church said.
“I felt like they were fair,” Church concluded.
The jury did not get to hear his story. Attorneys for the Pascagoula policyholders had hoped it would illustrate for the jury how wind can gut the first floor of a home without destroying the second floor.