2nd Lawsuit Filed By Injured Victim of Center City Building Collapse
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By Tim Jimenez
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A second victim is filing a lawsuit in the aftermath of Wednesday’s building collapse at 22nd and Market Streets.
Linda Bell, 50, and Nadine White, 54, are listed as plaintiffs in civil suits against property owner Richard Basciano and demolition company owner Griffin Campbell.
White, an employee of the Salvation Army thrift store, was the first to file a lawsuit on Thursday. She’s represented by construction accident attorney Robert Mongeluzzi. But then on Friday, Bell’s name appeared on an order granted by a Philadelphia judge.
Jonathan Cohen, the attorney who represents Bell, tells KYW Newsradio she is a mother of three and was as frequent shopper at that particular thrift store. At the time of the collapse on Wednesday, Cohen said Bell was shopping for children’s items she was to give to the needy when the adjoining building fell and crushed the store.
“She heard a tremendous boom that she likened to the sound of a bomb,” Cohen said. “When she was pulled out of the wreckage she looked up and saw only light. Then she realized there was no building anymore.”
Bell was treated at the hospital and released. “She is completely and utterly traumatized and has extreme difficulty even discussing this,” Cohen said.
On Friday, Common Pleas Court Judge Ellen Ceisler ordered that the site of the collapse at 22nd and Market be preserved so evidence can be examined by experts, including structural engineers, from both White and Bell’s camps along with the defendants.
They’ll have a chance, starting Saturday morning, to inspect and take pictures or video of the site from a safe distance that doesn’t get in the way of the official investigation.
And Judge Ceisler added that once the site is deemed safe, remaining debris has to stay on site for two days. And both sides will get a chance to look at the debris already taken away.
The damages the victims are seeking are unspecified.