One Love inventory seized for bad debt
November 8, 2014
Pitkin County sheriff's deputies oversaw the seizure of all cash and inventory at One Love Aspen on Friday in response to a court order that states the smoke shop owes $6,937 to a California supplier.
One Love Aspen — a shop owned by Barbara Serrano that sells smoking paraphernalia and accessories above Silver Peak Apothecary at 520 E. Cooper Ave. — is listed as the debtor in the Pitkin County Court judgment filed Aug. 13. The creditor is listed as Better Life Products Inc., a retailer based in Marina Del Ray, California. Better Life Products is represented by Garfield & Hecht lawyers Christopher Bryan and Angela Vichick.
"One Love, but there's no love today," said one of the men assisting with boxing and moving the inventory Friday.
Bryan said Serrano and One Love representatives have been absent from all court proceedings related to the matter this past summer. On Friday, Serrano could not be reached for comment. She has 14 days to respond to the seizure of her inventory, and if nothing is filed with the court in that time, the items go to auction in an attempt to satisfy the debt.
"We wouldn't have gone this far if anybody from the judgment debtor had responded to our written-demand letters, our service of process in the county court proceeding," Bryan said. "At any point, this could have been nipped in the bud, and they just disregarded all of our requests to resolve this, so we had no choice."
A complaint filed against One Love on June 19 states that the two parties entered into a contract for the sale of goods in November 2011 and that One Love failed to pay invoiced amounts for an order received in January. Listed damages include unpaid debt, consequential damages, late fees, costs, attorney's fees and interest.
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According to the filing, upon receiving the goods, One Love tendered a check for $1,794, which was returned as insufficient. One Love then attempted to resolve the matter with four checks in April, two of which were dishonored, according to the filing. Better Life Products then issued a notice that the outstanding balance owed under the first two "dishonored instruments" was $962 and demanded payment within 15 days. A second notice also was submitted for the amount of $462. No payment was received for either, and Better Life Products took civil action.
Pitkin County Sheriff's Deputy Michael Kendrick was at the shop Friday dealing with movers, employees, owners, lawyers and customers. He said One Love still has a legal right to its leased space, but all inventory had to be seized. He added that the debtor most likely will be responsible for costs associated with packaging, moving and storing the inventory, as well.
"The debt is going up as we speak," he said. "I mean, that's normally what happens."