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Nangle v. Brockman

Court of Appeals of Missouri, Eastern District, Fourth Division

February 23, 2016

JEANNE M. NANGLE, Respondent,
v.
FREDA L. BROCKMAN, Defendant/Appellant and WILLIAM T. FORGY, in his capacity as Trustee of the Freda Louise Brockman Trust, Defendant

          Appeal from the Circuit Court of St. Louis County. Hon. Colleen M. Dolan.

         Gregory P. White, St. Louis, MO, for appellant.

         Canice Timothy Rice, Jr., St. Louis, MO, for respondent.

         Sherri B. Sullivan, P.J., concurs. Lisa Van Amburg, C.J., concurs.

          OPINION

         KURT S. ODENWALD, Judge.

          Introduction

         Appellant Freda Brockman (" Brockman" ) appeals from the judgment of the trial court granting summary judgment in

Page 30

favor of Respondent Jeanne Nangle (" Nangle" ) in an action to quiet title in favor of Nangle with respect to five pieces of property formerly owned by Brockman. Because Nangle demonstrated the right to judgment as a matter of law on the basis of facts as to which there is no genuine dispute, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.[1]

         Factual and Procedural History

         In late 2011, Nangle filed suit in the Circuit Court of St. Louis County (" the trial court" ) seeking to quiet title to five properties located in St. Louis County in her favor: 41 Gravois, 49 Gravois, 211 Main Street, 731 Larkin Williams Road, and 817 Larkin Williams Road. In 2014, Nangle filed a motion for summary judgment as to each count of her Second Amended Petition, which the trial court granted on December 17, 2014. Viewed in the light most favorable to Brockman, the record before the trial court contained the following undisputed material facts:

         I. The Nangle-Brockman Proceedings in State Court

         In 1996, Donald Nangle (" Donald" ),[2] an attorney, brought suit against Brockman seeking to collect fees for legal services rendered. The Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis, following a jury verdict, rendered judgment in favor of Donald in the amount of $117,598.08. That same year, Donald assigned the judgment to his wife, Nangle. On appeal, this Court affirmed the judgment in part and reversed in part, resulting in a net judgment of $112,831.00 (referred to throughout this opinion as " the 1996 Nangle-Brockman judgment" ).[3] In 2002, Nangle assigned the 1996 Nangle-Brockman judgment to the trustee in Donald's bankruptcy estate. In 2009, the bankruptcy trustee reassigned the judgment back to Nangle.

         The current dispute between Nangle and Brockman, as mentioned, stems from Nangle's action to quiet title to five properties located in St. Louis County: 41 Gravois, 49 Gravois, 211 Main Street, 731 Larkin Williams Road, and 817 Larkin Williams Road. There is no dispute that, as of 2011, Brockman owned each of the five properties.[4]

         In 2011, on the basis of the 1996 Nangle-Brockman judgment, Nangle requested a writ of execution directing the Sheriff

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of St. Louis County to levy upon and sell each of the five properties mentioned above. The Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis issued executions in 2011 directing the Sheriff of St. Louis County to levy upon and sell 41 Gravois, 49 Gravois, and 211 Main Street. The Circuit Court later issued executions in 2012 directing the Sheriff of St. Louis County to levy upon and sell 731 Larkin Williams Road and 817 Larkin Williams Road. The Sheriff did so with respect to each property.

         At subsequent Sheriff's execution sales, Nangle made a credit bid of $50,000 for the purchase of 41 Gravois; a credit bid of $20,000 for the purchase of 49 Gravois; a credit bid of $5,000 for the purchase of 211 Main Street; a credit bid of $35,000 for the purchase of 731 Larkin Williams Road; and a credit bid of $20,000 for the purchase of 817 Larkin Williams Road. Each of the five properties was sold to Nangle for the amount listed above and conveyed to Nangle by the execution of a Sheriff's Deed. In 2014, Nangle paid to LPP Mortgage Ltd. (" LPP" ) all amounts due on the note which was secured by the deed of trust held by LPP on 41 Gravois, 49 Gravois, and 211 Main Street. LPP has prepared and recorded a deed of release.

         II. The Muegler Proceedings in Federal Court

         Arthur Muegler, Jr. (" Muegler" ), the attorney who represented Donald in the 1996 Nangle-Brockman judgment, was sued on a separate matter in the United States District for the Eastern District of Missouri (" District Court" ) by David Bening and Albert Harre (" the Bening plaintiffs" ). After obtaining a judgment against Muegler, the Bening plaintiffs sought to collect on the judgment in 1999 by filing a Motion for Creditor's Bill and Equitable Garnishment in the District Court against Nangle and Donald, alleging that the Nangles were indebted to Muegler.

         The summary judgment evidence presented to the trial court contained two sources of information regarding the Creditor's Bill and Equitable Garnishment proceedings in the District Court. First, the docket sheet from the District Court was submitted to the trial court. The docket sheet contained entries pertaining to the Creditor's Bill and Equitable Garnishment action. An entry dated 02/23/1999 reads as follows: " MOTION by plaintiff Alfred W. Harre, plaintiff David Bening for order for Creditor's Bill and Equitable Garnishment (CQL) (Entered: 02/23/1999)." Directly below that docket entry, also dated 02/23/1999, is the following entry: " PRELIMINARY ORDER IN AID OF EXECUTION AND OF CREDITORS BILL AND EQUITABLE GARNISHMENT (See this Order for Details) by Honorable Charles A. Shaw granting Motion for Order to Creditor's Bill and Equitable Garnishment... ...


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