Connecticut Man Claims He Can't Sell House With Manure Odor Next Door

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An Oxford man has filed a lawsuit against his neighbor, claiming he can't sell his house because of the smell of horse manure from next door.

In court documents filed in Superior Court, Gino Sciortino claims Helen Catlin is permitting significant quantities of horse manure to accumulate in piles on her property and the foul odor can often be smelled at his home.

Helen and David Catlin have lived on Park Road more than a year and own three horses.

Sciortino said that at times, the smell is overpowering.

"When the wind blows, everything smells of horse manure," Sciortino said Thursday, saying the odor has made it difficult to sell his house for the past year.

Sciortino is asking for monetary damages as well as an injunction ordering Helen Catlin to relocate the horse manure and other debris and to re-grade the soil near their property line.

"Once this is resolved, I will try to sell again," Sciortino said.

David Catlin, the husband of the woman named in the lawsuit, said Thursday that he mixes the manure with other material to create compost, which he sprinkles with lime to prevent the scent from wafting across the property.

"Nobody else seems to be able to smell it," Catlin said of his other neighbors. "He's misleading a lot of people."

Staffers at the Pomperaug Health District have not reported any complaints about horse manure on Park Road.