Home / Gossip / Marisa Tomei’s parents file $10M suit against Sean Lennon

Marisa Tomei’s parents file $10M suit against Sean Lennon

Marisa Tomei’s parents are tired of giving peace a chance with John Lennon’s son, demanding $ 10 million in damages because his front yard “stink tree” has pushed through the foundation of their Greenwich Village townhouse.

In papers filed in Manhattan Supreme Court, Gary and Addie Tomei said the 60-foot-high ailanthus tree in Sean Lennon’s front yard on W. 13th St. is growing into the concrete foundation of their townhouse and into their front stoop, breaking and displacing the railing.

It has “compromised the basement wall and interior … (causing) irreparable damage to the structural integrity of the building,” according to court papers.

The Tomeis said they have been trying to get Lennon, 39, to address the problem for a year, but court papers said he has just let it be.

“He refuses to do anything. He’s owned it for six years and neglected it. I like him personally but he’s stubborn and he has a lawyer who is very belligerent,” Gary Tomei said in an interview at his home.

Lennon’s limited liability corporation purchased the townhouse in 2008 for $ 9.5 million. City records show the corporation is based at the Dakota, where his mother, Yoko Ono, still lives.

Sean Lennon was sued by Marisa Tomei’s parents over a 60-foot-high ailanthus tree in his front yard. Gary Gershoff/WireImage Sean Lennon was sued by Marisa Tomei’s parents over a 60-foot-high ailanthus tree in his front yard. Enlarge Actress Marisa Tomei attends the 2014 Fragrance Foundation Awards on June 16, 2014 in New York City. Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Fragrance Foundation

The Oscar winner’s parents have been trying to get the tree taken care of for a year, they say.

Enlarge

“Our clients fear that the entire front brick facade of their building is being compromised and may become damaged as a result of this shifting of the stoop and columns,” the Tomei’s lawyer, Gary Walters, wrote to Lennon last September. The letter is an exhibit in court documents.

Tomei said his foundation has been undermined by more than the tree root: Lennon’s contractor dug 22 feet below basement level and disrupted an underground stream, which washed out the soil under Tomei’s foundation, causing the whole house to shift.

He says his windows and doors are all warped. All 14 doors in his two-family home are unable to close.

“You’re making me out to be a bad guy,” Lennon’s unidentified contractor complained to Tomei on Tuesday in front of reporters.

“You are a bad guy,” Tomei, a trial lawyer, retorted.

This tree on W. 13th St. has caused permanent damage to the Tomeis’ home, according to a suit.Google This tree on W. 13th St. has caused permanent damage to the Tomeis’ home, according to a suit.

Tomei said his home was further damaged when pipes in Lennon’s house burst earlier this year. The flood caused the Tomeis, who bought their property in 1994, to move in with their Oscar-winning daughter until their home was repaired.

The tree that they are complaining about is on the western edge of Lennon’s front yard.

Court papers estimate the tree is 30 to 50 years old and has a 24-inch trunk, and suggest that the tree is diseased with a partially hollow core.

The papers include colored photos of cracks in the Tomei stoop, allegedly caused by the tree’s pushing into it and tree roots behind the cracked foundation.

Ailantus trees, also known as the Tree of Heaven, is an invasive species from China that can grow as high as 90 feet. They’re known as stink trees because they emit a rotten odor when cut.

An attorney for Lennon, Jonas Herbsman, declined to comment but appeared surprised when told how much the Tomeis are demanding in damages.

“Over a tree,” he noted.

Tomei said he’s pro-tree and as president of the block association has worked to get many trees planted on the quiet block of brownstones between Sixth and Seventh Avenues.

“I hate to see this tree come down, but it’s destroying my stoop,” Tomei said.

“There are cracks everywhere. The masons don’t want to make repairs because they say it’s just going to happen again.

“I want him to take the tree down and pay my expenses. It’s not cheap. I tried but you can’t talk to him. He’s always traveling,” he said of the musician.

bross@nydailynews.com

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entertainment news ,
marisa tomei ,
sean lennon ,
yoko ono

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