Davis Islands resident sues to block taller gate at Derek Jeter mansion

Tampa's Variance Review Board in January approved a request from retired New York Yankees star Derek Jeter to replace his existing 6-foot security gate at his Davis Islands mansion with a new gate that's 8 feet tall at its highest point and opaque so that passers-by can't see into his property. Neighbors and Jeter's representative say uninvited visitors come by constantly and get out of their cars to take pictures, shoot video and even fly drones at the property. JAMES BORCHUCK  |   Times
Tampa's Variance Review Board in January approved a request from retired New York Yankees star Derek Jeter to replace his existing 6-foot security gate at his Davis Islands mansion with a new gate that's 8 feet tall at its highest point and opaque so that passers-by can't see into his property. Neighbors and Jeter's representative say uninvited visitors come by constantly and get out of their cars to take pictures, shoot video and even fly drones at the property. JAMES BORCHUCK | Times
Published February 15 2017

TAMPA — A Davis Islands resident last week filed a lawsuit to block a taller gate that City Hall has approved for retired New York Yankees star Derek Jeter's waterfront mansion.

Deborah Zomermaand, who lives about 700 feet from Jeter's home on Bahama Circle, is challenging a decision by the city's Variance Review Board last month to allow Jeter to raise the height of a gate into his home from 6 to 8 feet at its highest point and to make it opaque so that passers-by cannot see into the estate.

A representative for Jeter, who last year married model Hannah Davis, and neighbors told the city that as many as 100 visitors a day stop in front of Jeter's 30,000-square-foot mansion to snap photos, hope for a glimpse of the its famous owner and, in extreme cases, wander onto the property, trample the landscaping or fly drones overhead.

In her lawsuit, Zomermaand contends that the Variance Review Board exceeded its authority, denied her due process, did not remain true to the city's comprehensive land-use plan, made decisions not supported by evidence and approved a variance from city rules for a "self-created hardship" that was not related to the property itself. The suit names the city and Jeter as defendants and asks a judge to quash the board's decision.

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