Mike Ross out at Rarity Bay

Receiver takes charge of association

Josh Flory knoxnews.com

Sterling Owen used to chase criminals for a living. Nowadays, his job description includes running the homeowners association of a local waterfront golf community.

Earlier this year, the former Knoxville police chief was appointed as a receiver in connection with a lawsuit filed by Robert Stooksbury against his estranged business partner Maryville developer Mike Ross and others.

That case focused largely on Rarity Pointe, a waterfront community in Lenoir City which has since been sold at a foreclosure auction. But last week, Owen announced plans to take an active role in leadership at Rarity Bay, which is located in Vonore.

In a letter to Rarity Bay owners and residents that was dated July 19, Owen said he had discharged Ross, his niece, and two other people as directors of Rarity Bay Community Association Inc.

The former police chief went on to say that he was temporarily assuming the positions of president and chairman of the board until new directors and officers could be installed, and that he would chair a meeting scheduled for Wednesday.

"It is my goal to put the Association under the control of the members as soon as practical," he said. "We request your patience as we transition to a new Board of Directors and method of operations."

Ross could not be reached for comment. An attorney representing Owen, Luis Bustamante, said he doesn't comment on pending litigation.

At least one of the board's current members was pleased with the move. Rita Lemanski said she wasn't surprised by the move and predicted that it will have a positive impact.

Asked why, she said, "Well, I think now the community can move forward. Mr. Ross has, as you well know, a lot of difficulties, and so now without him at the helm (it) will allow our community to grow."