Westerly, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island's attorney general has filed a lawsuit against a group of Westerly property owners who he says are illegally trying to block access to a public beach.
Attorney General Peter Kilmartin tells The Providence Journal he intervened after talks between the town and the owners of seven properties off Atlantic Avenue failed to settle the dispute.
He is seeking a preliminary injunction that would allow the public to use rights-of-way from the street to access the beach, which is just east of Misquamicut state beach.
He says those rights-of-way were established in 1909 when the properties were subdivided.
He says the residents have illegally posted private property and no trespassing signs, erected snow fencing and warned people not to use the beach.