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Wrongful death suit in Pennsylvania building tragedy

The family of a Pennsylvania woman is filing a wrongful death claim against several businesses and persons from the collapse of a building that killed six people and injured numerous others. The incident took place in a Salvation Army store, which was adjoined to a building that a developer was set to destroy. A report stated that the family is asking over $50,000 compensation for each count, which includes five others in addition to wrongful death.

The woman had gone with a friend to the Salvation Army store to shop. The report did not state whether or not there were notices posted in the area of the store of the impending danger but that the woman was unaware of any danger when she went in the store. An unsupported wall of the building that was to be destroyed collapsed while she was shopping, falling on the roof of the Salvation Army store, and causing the roof to cave in.

The woman's family has a large collection of evidence, including emails that the developer and the Salvation Army store knew about the danger to the public for several weeks before the incident but chose to ignore it. A statement given by the family alleged that there were bricks from the building falling down on the roof of the store several days before the actual collapse of the wall and that the store should not have been open. Legal representation for the family called what happened beforehand "a lengthy, deadly game of chicken" between the two and that neither cared about the outcome pertaining to human life.

So far, this suit is the largest filed with the Pennsylvania courts in this incident. Wrongful death can be traumatic on the family members and friends left behind. Families often seek financial compensation to help with medical and other expenses, but they may also be like this family in not wanting others to go through the devastation they themselves have had to go through. There is hope that lawsuits such as this one could help prevent that.

Source: The Pennsylvania Record, Wrongful death claim filed on behalf of Phila. building collapse victim who was daughter of city treasurer, Jon Campisi, Sept. 19, 2013

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