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Lawsuits pile up against Castlerock

By Marie Rohde

Two subcontractors have filed lawsuits demanding more than $1 million from Milwaukee general contractor Castlerock Commercial Construction Inc.

Thomas Fahl, a lawyer representing Lemberg Electric Co. Inc., Brookfield, said Castlerock has rebuffed his client’s many attempts to get paid.

“It is our understanding that Castlerock has been paid for the work, if not in full, a retainer may have been withheld,” Fahl said. “In the industry, that is generally 10 percent. By statute, they should have paid their subcontractors.”

Richard Jinkins, Castlerock’s president, was not immediately available to comment.

Lemberg is seeking $293,753 plus costs for work done as a subcontractor on a job remodeling restrooms at General Mitchell International Airport and work on the Midwest Airlines reservation counter at the airport as well as the nearby Midwest Airlines hangar. The airline has since been bought by Republic Airways Holdings.

Another Milwaukee contractor on the Midwest job, Mared Mechanical Contractors Corp., Milwaukee, is asking for $733,683 from Castlerock in another lawsuit filed in Milwaukee County Circuit Court. The largest portion of that money demand is a request for treble damages based on a claim of theft by contractor.

According to the complaint, Mared was hired by Castlerock to do work at the hangar earlier this year. Mared claims it was shorted $183,074 on the $358,056 contract. A check issued by Castlerock in June for the remaining amount bounced, according to the court record.

Mared worked for Castlerock on a second project, the Screaming Tuna, a bar and restaurant at 106 W. Seeboth St., Milwaukee, in March. The subcontractor received partial payment but is seeking $13,879, according to the court record.

Also named as defendants in the Mared lawsuit are Jinkins and James Worthington, vice president of Castlerock. According to the lawsuit, Mared has filed a claim with the airline and names it as a defendant.

A third lawsuit against Castlerock brought by another subcontractor earlier this year was settled out of court. Grafton-based Paul Crandall & Associates Inc., a roofing and sheet metal company, filed a lawsuit asking for $26,500 for work on a Cedarburg project. The case was settled for an undisclosed amount, with each side paying its own legal fees.

In another lawsuit, Castlerock and Jinkins are suing a former subcontractor, Marquette Mechanical Contractors Inc., Milwaukee, and one of its lawyers, alleging defamation of character. Marquette has filed a complaint with the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office alleging forgery and misappropriation of money by Castlerock.

Jinkins’ lawyer, Matthew J. Price, said he could not comment directly on the pending case.

“Castlerock is a successful and growing high quality construction company that greatly values its strong relationship with its subcontractors, suppliers and service providers,” Price said, “and remains firmly committed to timely meeting financial obligations to them.”

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