Contractor Charged after Fatal Botched Building Demolition
Philadelphia Building Demolition Takes Tragic Turn
“The tragic and preventable collapse… robbed our city of six amazing Philadelphians and left an additional 13 wounded.” – Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams as reported by FOX News
- Griffin Campbell was hired to oversee the demolition of a run-down store front which ended in a 40 foot section of wall collapsing on top of a Salvation Army thrift store.
- 19 people were buried under the rubble, leaving six of the victims dead.
- According to Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams, Campbell was made aware of potential dangers the night before the June 5 demolition by an architect, but chose to ignore the warnings.
- Williams alleges that Campbell, who was being paid a flat rate, cut corners in order to meet deadlines and reduce costs in hopes of maximizing his profits.
- The D.A. also stated that Campbell removed valuable floor joints from the building after being given permission to salvage materials, resulting in the exterior walls losing stability.
- A video posted on YouTube shows an excavator being used in the demolition as bricks and sections of wall smash down on an open side walk. There was no scaffolding in place to catch the debris or act as a support for the exterior wall.
Criminal Charges Filed against Campbell
Though investigations into the collapse are ongoing, Campbell has been charged with a number of felonies and is considered to be the primary culprit.
The current charges include:
- Six counts of 3rd degree murder
- Six counts of involuntary manslaughter
- 13 counts of reckless endangerment
- Criminal conspiracy
- Risking a catastrophe
Charges were previously brought against Sean Benschop, the excavator operator, after it was determined that he was high on marijuana and painkillers while operating the heavy equipment – the charges are still pending.
Lawsuits have been filed against both Campbell and Benschop as well as the property owner.
Contact an Experienced Premises Liability Attorney
Because of careless property owners, many people will suffer catastrophic injuries such as brain injuries or spinal cord injuries. The nature of many injuries which occur on dangerous property can be more than painful- they can be permanent.
Do not let your injuries overwhelm your life. If you have been seriously injured as a result of a condition or the use of real property, contact Thomas J. Henry. As your premises liability lawyer, we will secure proper medical care and fight to make sure you receive proper compensation. We are available 24/7, nights and weekends and we represent clients/victims all over the country.