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Mother and daughter exposed to mold settle for $1M  

By: Heath Hamacher//September 23, 2022

Mother and daughter exposed to mold settle for $1M  

By: Heath Hamacher//September 23, 2022

After a weeklong trial, a Charleston County jury deliberated approximately three hours before awarding $1 million to a mother and her adult daughter after they were exposed to high levels of mold in their Mount Pleasant apartment.  

The attorney for plaintiffs Karolina (mother) and Krista Richardson, Clayton McCullough of McCullough Khan Appel in Mount Pleasant, said that his clients lived in the Oyster Park Apartments in Mount Pleasant from May 2017 through September 2017. Just a couple of months after moving in, McCullough said, the women, neither of whom has a history of asthma, began to suffer respiratory issues.  

McCullough said that Karolina has Meniere’s Disease, a disorder of the inner ear, and that the mold exposure worsened her symptoms, causing headaches, dizziness, and nausea.  

According to the complaint, the plaintiffs informed the defendants several times about the mold and the impact it was having on their health. After “multiple demands to do so,” the defendants hired a lab to do mold testing on the apartment. The testing revealed “significantly elevated levels of mold,” the complaint states, especially Penicillium and Aspergillus.  

McCullough said this is not an isolated incident.  

“Oyster Park Apartments has had numerous complaints from residents of mold in their apartments since the complex was opened in 2017,” McCullough said. “Unfortunately, these issues are ongoing—tenants are still complaining of mold in their apartments.” 

The Richardsons moved into another apartment unit but continued to suffer the effects of mold, developing toxic mold disease and have undergone numerous medical treatments. In court documents, the Richardsons accused the apartment complex of breaching its duties to them by, among other ways, falsely representing to the plaintiffs that the mold had been eradicated and that the apartments were habitable.  

“The evidence at trial showed there have also been ongoing tenant complaints of water leaks and excessive moisture in the Oyster Park units.  There has been flooding caused by a rain event, leaks caused by roof issues, window and plumbing leaks, and HVAC issues causing high levels of humidity.” 

McCullough said that he is pleased with the verdict and the decision to hold the defendants responsible.  

“I am happy the jury saw the disturbing impact this event had on the Richardson family,” McCullough said.  

The defendants were represented by Jeffrey Ross and Emily Sheets of Ross & Cristaldi in Mount Pleasant. Neither attorney responded to a request for comment.  


Amount: $1 million ($850,000 for one plaintiff and $150,000 for the other) 

Injuries alleged: Significant respiratory and allergy issues for both plaintiffs and exacerbation of Meniere’s Disease for Karolina Richardson 

Case name: Karolina Richardson and Krista Richardson v. Mt. Pleasant Square Associates et al.  

Court: Charleston County Circuit Court 

Case No.: 2018-CP-10-03286 

Judge: Jennifer McCoy 

Date of verdict: July 22 

Most helpful experts: Drs. Andrew Davidson and Marshall White (treating physicians), Robert Brabham, Ph.D. (vocational expert), Karen Shelton (life care planner), and Oliver Wood, Ph.D., (economist) 

Attorney for plaintiff: Clayton McCullough of McCullough Khan Appel in Mount Pleasant 

Attorneys for defendant: Jeffrey Ross and Emily Sheets of Ross & Cristaldi in Mount Pleasant 







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