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Strom v. Sheldon
Washington Court of Appeals
527 P.2d 1382 (1975)
Bert Strom and his wife (plaintiffs) owned property next to Dick Sheldon and his wife (defendants). The deeds described the common boundary line as the center or thread of a slough that divided the two properties and connected to a harbor. Dick Sheldon’s father had dredged the slough to widen it to moor boats and, in doing so, moved part of the slough onto the Sheldon property. When the Stroms purchased their land, they did not know part of the original boundary was on dry land. For many years the couples were unconcerned that the slough had moved. If the Stroms asked, the Sheldons moved boats blocking the Stroms’ side. However, in 1972 the Sheldons had a survey done, claimed part of the slough was entirely on their property, and refused to move barges moored on the Stroms’ side. The Stroms sued to quiet title to the strip between the original boundary line and the relocated center line and to enjoin the Sheldons from interfering with using the slough. Instead the trial court quieted title in favor of the Sheldons by placing the boundary in its original location, effectively depriving the Stroms of accessing about 300 feet of slough. The Stroms appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Pearson, C.J.)
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