These are the actual photographs provided to the Court by the landlord to justify their withholding of almost the entirety of Smith’s security deposit ($700 out of the $799 deposit). Further, the Courts (trial/district court as well as the court of appeals) were swayed by the argument of the landlord that they “actually incurred costs above and beyond the deposit amount, in actuality around $1300”. My belief is, if this were true, then PROVE it with real evidence, and you should have withheld the full amount then! They obviously wanted to try to give him a tiny piece back to either rub it in his face, or to make it seem like they were being reasonable in calculating the actual amount necessary “to repair the apartment to the condition at the commencement of the tenancy” under the statute. But, you can see, that they obviously changed their arguments as they went along. They began one way, and then to the courts they added additional expenses which is randomly throwing darts at a board that shouldn’t have stuck but the judiciary is a flawed and bias system. I believe the judge simply put trusted a landlord and people wearing business suits over a black client who was a tenant who they convinced had a “verbal altercation” with the landlord and was probably somehow aggressive. When testifying, the landlord admitted the altercation resulted in no documenation, no police called, no anything. Obviously they chose to attack my clients character as a means to create the illusion of righteousness, when all I tried to do as an attorney was focus on the law and facts and evidence. In other words, the issue for me was whether the actual claims are backed by the evidence and if they can prove it, and whether the amounts they withheld match up the receipts. None of them did, and the judge couldn’t care less. I felt like the burden of proof was on me and my client the entire case, even though the legislature (the lawmakers in the State of Minnesota) deliberately put the burden on landlords to prove they had valid reason for withholding security deposits. It goes to show that the judiciary can have more power than the legislature and do whatever they want, corruptly.
So that is it. That is all of the photographic evidence provided to the court by the landlord.