Suit: Report of store's death is premature

Varsity Lincoln-Mercury in suburban Detroit has filed a lawsuit accusing Star Lincoln-Mercury, owned by Hoot McInerney, of sending damaging mailings to Varsity's customers.

In the lawsuit, lawyers for Varsity claim that starting on July 24 Star and McInerney mailed letters to at least 65 Varsity customers whose leases on vehicles were about to expire. The letters allude to the difficult economic climate and then say, "It has come to my attention that your Lincoln-Mercury dealer has decided to close his doors."

The letters say McInerney would be "honored to serve you." In court filings, Varsity says it is not going out of business and alleges the letters hurt its reputation and business. It seeks damages in excess of $25,000 plus costs and fees.

You can reach Jamie LaReau at jlareau@crain.com

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