CHICAGO (CBS) — Two brothers are still fighting over some autographed baseballs that belonged to their late father, in a spat that has now included a lawsuit and criminal charges.
Brad Pogofsky filed a lawsuit in May, accusing his brother, Benjamin Pogofsky, of harassing him at his downtown condominium over the autographed White Sox baseballs, and using an off-duty Highland Park police commander – Highland Park Cmdr. William Tellone – to do the same.
The balls were left to him by his father, former White Sox Board of Directors member Larry A. Pogofsky, according to a suit filed in Cook County Circuit Court.
The suit claims Brad Pogofsky alerted his mother that his brother, Benjamin Pogofsky, was named as a defendant in a financial industry claim alleging misconduct. The brother then orchestrated a series of threatening telephone calls and text messages from off-duty police officers and “physically imposing body builders,” the complaint alleges.
Within a day of the filing of the civil lawsuit, Brad Pogofsky, of Chicago, was arrested by Highland Park police and charged with residential burglary, on the grounds that he stole the baseballs from the hoem of his mother, the Chicago Tribune reported. He was released on $150,000 bond.
The lawsuit admitted that several months after Larry Pogofsky’s death, Brad Pogofsky removed “a few” of the autographed baseballs based on his father’s repeated assurances. During this time, other children set aside and removed items of family memorabilia from the home.
Since then, an attorney for Brad Pogofksy has said the issue surrounding the baseballs is a family matter that should not be decided by the courts, and has offered to drop the lawsuit, the Tribune reported.
The men’s mother, Lynda Pogofsky, tells the Tribune she agrees it’s a family matter, but “somebody has done the wrong thing in this case.”
Larry Pogofsky died in December 2010, but his will was not filed until February 2011, the suit says. Before he died, Larry Pogofsky repeatedly told his son Brad that he was to receive his collection of hundreds of autographed baseballs, the suit claims.
The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.