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ALETHA H. ALLGOOD v. HERSHEL W. ALLGOOD

JULY 17, 1985

ALETHA H. ALLGOOD
v.
HERSHEL W. ALLGOOD



BEFORE WALKER, P.J., AND ROBERTSON AND ANDERSON, JJ.

ROBERTSON, JUSTICE, FOR THE COURT:

I

Over title to thirteen acres of less than flourishing Jasper County timber lands and minerals of at best modest value - and no doubt other real or imagined sins of each toward the other, Aletha H. Allgood and her son Hershel W. Allgood have gone to war. The dust has settled sufficiently that we may hold, under the rules of law applicable to such cases, that Aletha holds the property subject to a constructive trust in favor of Hershel. The chancellor's decision to that substantive effect is affirmed.

 II.

 A.

 At sometime prior to 1973 Larry Allgood had acquired by inheritance the 13-acre tract here in dispute, together with an undivided interest in certain minerals, all situated just across the road from the Antioch Church in the Second Judicial District of Jasper County. Larry determined to sell this property and in that connection he communicated with Aletha Allgood, who was the Defendant below and is the Appellant here. Aletha had lived in the vicinity of the disputed property for years. She had work for many years as a legal secretary and had acquired a certain rudimentary knowledge regarding real estate transactions. Aletha agreed to assist

 Larry in selling the property and went so far as to advertise the same in a local newspaper listing her local telephone. No sale occurred.

 In July of 1973, Hershel W. Allgood was living in San Luis Obispo, California. Hershel was the Plaintiff below and is the Appellee here. Hershel W. Allgood is the son of Aletha Allgood.

 In 1960, Hershel had left Mississippi and moved to California. There he met and married his wife, Opal Allgood. The two had lived in California continuously up until July of 1973. At some time prior to July, 1973, Hershel and his wife decided to leave California and move back to Jasper County, Mississippi. They communicated this interest to Aletha in a telephone conversation which occurred a few weeks prior to July 11, 1983. At the time of this telephone conversation, Aletha was in Jasper County, Mississippi, and her son Hershel and his wife Opal were in California. During this telephone conversation, Hershel told his mother that he would like to purchased Larry's property in Jasper County, if she could make the necessary arrangements - Hershel being in California and not being able to come to Mississippi. According to Hershel, his mother agreed to effect this purchase for the sum of $3,500.00. The description of this three-way telephone conversation found in the brief of Aletha Allgood is as follows:

 Hershel W. Allgood stated, "I called or either she called - anyway we were talking on the phone - she said the land was available for sale." "And if I wanted it for $3,500.00 she could go ahead and make the arrangements and I could get it." "I asked her if she would go ahead and take care of it, I would like to have it."

 Opal Allgood testified that Aletha Allgood

 "told him [Hershel] Larry had this land for sale here, which was a part of the old original Allgood property. . . . Hershel told her to go ahead and get the land for him and take care of it or handle it."

 When asked to recall the exact words of the conversation, Opal testified,

 "She, or we had called her - I'm not positive who had called who - but she told us that Larry

 Allgood had this land here for sale and it was part of the original Allgood land, and did we want it; and Hershel said Yes, to get it for him, you know, to make ...


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