SOLON — Residents voted to take a property owner to court to make him remove a rock wall he built along Brighton Road.

What could have been a long, contentious Thursday night about a legal matter, in the end, was not. At an uneventful, 20-minute special town meeting attended by about 100 people.

Town officials have asked Kirt Olson to remove a rock wall that they say is in the town’s right of way, making the town liable if a vehicle crashes into it and someone is injured.

Olson, who attended the meeting but did not speak, has argued that he repaired an existing wall that had been in place long enough to legally become the right of way.

On Thursday, residents voted to put $8,000 into a legal reserve account to challenge a lawsuit filed by Olson.

After the meeting, resident Ronald Brown said he voted in favor of going to court because he didn’t think it was right to make an exception for one person.

“If he gets away with that, then anybody in town can build next to the road. We’ll have to move the right of way for everybody,” Brown said.

Resident Billie Lawrence said her husband built her a rock wall near the road, too, and the town also asked him to remove it. He complied.

“I don’t think it’s fair for (Olson) to be exempt from the rule everybody else has to follow,” Lawrence said.

“Why should one person have any more rights than anybody else in this town?” she said. “They shouldn’t. They should be treated the same.”

At a special town meeting in August, residents voted to give Olson 90 days to move the wall or else the town would use heavy equipment to move it for him.

Olson did not remove the wall and he filed for a preliminary injunction to prohibit the town from doing so. A judge issued the temporary restraining order against the town on Nov. 9.

If residents had not wanted to fight the issue in Somerset County Superior Court, they could have voted Thursday to change the right of way to run along the Olson’s property line. That way if someone was injured when they crashed into the wall, the town would not be liable.

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