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2005-01-08
Durham, N.C. Home Depot In Negligence Lawsuit Over Boy's Brain Injury

A jury in Durham, North Carolina is in the middle of its deliberations this week over whether or not to charge Home Depot with negligence in the case of a boy who suffered permanent brain damage nearly four years ago during a shopping trip at the home improvement retailer. Will Baker, the boy from Durham, was 8 years old in March of 2001 when he was struck in the head by a steel display door that fell on him. A 12 person jury will decide Baker's and Home Depot's fate, and millions of dollars in damages. The trial has already lasted more than two months, according to the Durham Herald-Sun. The plaintiff's lawyer, Richard Watson, says that the boy may not be able to finish high school because of his injuries, and that $20 million would be an appropriate sum to compensate the boy for ongoing medical bills, physical pain and mental anguish. The family is charging Home Depot with "overwhelming" negligence by not properly attaching the display door so it wouldn't fall, by not inspecting it, and by allowing it to remain in a dangerous condition before it collapsed on Baker. Home Depot has denied any negligence in the case.

Home Depot is a dangerous place to shop. Parents: if you are going to Home Depot, leave the children behind. The "sky shelves" and the heavy merchandise stored over your heads, makes stores like Home Depot risky business for shoppers. Several years ago I filed legislation in Massachusetts to require home improvement retailers to give their customers hard hats. The retail lobby considered that a joke, and lobbied against the measure, but the Baker family I'm sure is not laughing today. For more stories about Home Depot's "falling merchandise" problems, search this database by "falling."

What you can do: Home Depot is a dangerous place to shop. Parents: if you are going to Home Depot, leave the children behind. The "sky shelves" and the heavy merchandise stored over your heads, makes stores like Home Depot risky business for shoppers. California is the only state in the nation that has a law regulating the storage of merchandise in sky shelves. Several years ago I filed legislation in Massachusetts to require home improvement retailers to give their customers hard hats. The retail lobby considered that a joke, and lobbied against the measure, but the Baker family I'm sure is not laughing today. For more stories about Home Depot's and Wal-Mart's "falling merchandise" problems, search this database by "falling."










 
 
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