CHINO, CA — A San Bernardino Superior Court judge has ruled in favor of allowing the lawsuit by a group of Chino Airport tenants against the Planes of Fame to go forward. In a hearing held on May 17, Judge David Cohn found that the Chino Airport tenants had a probability of winning at trial on their claims for nuisance, trespass, and interference with the tenants’ businesses during the Air Show.
“We are quite heartened that the judge saw the merits of our case,” said Christen Wright, Director of Yanks Air Museum. “To have this much evidence gathered already, and for the judge to recognize that, really shows the strength of our case.”
The Chino Airport tenants filed suit against Planes of Fame in March 2017 after numerous attempts to resolve ongoing issues, including intentional physical blockage of access to tenants’ businesses before, during, and after the air show.
The defendant, Planes of Fame, had filed a special motion that, had the judge granted, could have resulted in the dismissal of the lawsuit without it ever going to trial. By denying the motion, the lawsuit may proceed to trial.
“Our goal is to find a fair resolution prior to the 2018 air show,” Wright said. “We are all supportive of our military’s service and sacrifice for our country and want the air show to continue in a way that does not harm our businesses.“
“Unfortunately, Planes of Fame has refused to address the issues in a fair manner, which is why the tenants had to file the lawsuit,” said Michael Thayer, President of Flying Tigers. “This is not a path that would have been chosen had they just agreed to treat us fairly. Years have been spent trying to resolve this prior to filing the lawsuit, and it had become clear that taking legal action was the only way that our voice could be heard,” Thayer said.
“We are very grateful for the support that we have received from other airport tenants and other small business owners who are not part of the airport but who understand the predicament that we are in.”
To the extent possible, the Chino Airport tenants will request an early trial date for the benefit of all parties and the aviation community. The next hearing is scheduled on May 31, 2017.