Owner of crumbling Dorchester house loses yet another court battle in war on ISD

The Supreme Judicial Court today upheld a judge's appointment of a receiver to do something about the fire-ravaged, rat-infested three decker at 97 Mt. Ida Rd. that its owner, James Dickey of Sudbury, has refused to clean up since it burned in a fire in 2011.

Dickey lost in part because he refused to hire a lawyer to represent the limited liability company he set up to own what's left of a house, for which a Housing Court judge appointed a receiver, who has hired contractors to clean out the property, including removing hundreds of cat-food cans - and now trying to sell it. Although individuals can represent themselves in court - as Dickey has done in numerous lawsuits in both state and federal court over both this issue and a failed suit against the NFL - they cannot, at least in state court, represent LLCs that they own.

It is well settled under Massachusetts law that, with one very limited exception not applicable here, "corporations must appear and be represented in court, if at all, by attorneys." Varney Enters., Inc. v. WMF, Inc., 402 Mass. 79, 82 (1988). ...

This is appropriate because Massachusetts limited liability companies, like Massachusetts business corporations, are legal entities with the rights to sue and be sued separate and apart from their shareholdersa nd members. See G. L. c. 156C, ยง 55. Also, as the name implies, limited liability companies limit the liability of their members, similarly to corporations with respect to corporate shareholders.

Dickey was actually appealing a ruling by a single SJC justice last fall upholding a decision by a Housing Court judge to keep the receiver on the job after rejecting Dickey's allegations the receiver has done questionable things in the past.

Before taking up the receiver's actions, Dickey had repeatedly filed suits claiming ISD and Housing Court judges were out to get him as part of a conspiracy to steal property from black homeowners in Dorchester - claims courts have just as repeatedly rejected, in part because Dickey is white.


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PDF icon Complete Dickey ruling135.33 KB


I want that house

Is it still for sale? 500K is a little steep, but I'd take it for 400K. Redfin says sale pending. The views from that house are incredible.

(I can't actually afford to buy it, just dreaming here)

Good bones!

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Despite all it has been through, that place looks surprisingly solid inside.

P.S. My son's band would LOVE to have the run of the place to shoot a music video. How cool!


Still has ceiling fans, refrigerator, washer dryer unit. Little bit of drywall and you're in business.

Shabby chic still a thing?

You likely could get all the

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You likely could get all the work done for around ~500-600k condo out the two bottom floors for about $550 peice and live in the top floor with the best view for free, assuming you can get the financing.

I have friends in the neighborhood, someone did the same thing with this building which is across the park and also burnt out (though more recently than this hunk of junk)


Blighted Properties

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Absentee white owners allowing properties to become and stay blighted cost black people far more money and disruption than anything the ISD has done in this situation.


Interesting facts about the MA SJC (via mass.gov)

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"The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC), established in 1692, is the oldest appellate court in continuous existence in the Western Hemisphere and operates under the oldest, still functioning written constitution in the world."



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Is this story the slowest, most drawn-out train wreck in Boston's history? If not, what is?

Green Line Extension

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Close 2nd to the GLX are the "temporary" buses to replace trolleys down South Huntington Ave that have been in use since the mid-80s.

If only Boston had some sort

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If only Boston had some sort of Authority for seizing and doing Redevelopment of these blighted properties... instead of relying on ISD and a receiver to drag this process forward..