Another lawsuit filed over Fairmont City fire fatality

Kelly Holleran Oct. 22, 2008, 9:57am

Michael Garcia has filed suit on behalf of his recently deceased father against HavaHome Mobile Park and its manager, claiming his father was killed in a fire that broke out at a mobile home he was renting.

Michael claims his father, Joseph Jose Garcia, died April 8, three days after he had moved into the home located on Lot 49 at 5100 Collinsville Rd. in Fairmont City.

Last week Ivan Gomez sued the same mobile home park where his wife, and two children also perished in the fire.

Lisa Oseguera, the manager of the mobile park, approved Joseph to move into the home, but failed to provide the home with fire extinguishers or smoke detectors, the suit filed Oct. 16 states.

She also had knowledge of a door that had been hidden from both an internal and external view, according to the complaint.

Because of their father's death, Michael claims he and his brother, David, have suffered personal and pecuniary losses including the loss of money, benefits, goods and services.

They also lost Joseph's companionship, instruction, moral training, superintendence of education and society, according to the complaint.

Michael claims Oseguera had the duty to protect tenants from unreasonable harm, but violated that duty when she failed to ensure the home was equipped with a fire extinguisher and smoke detector, failed to ensure the mobile home had two working doors, failed to ensure altercations were made in compliance with county ordinances, failed to comply with the fire prevention and safety code and failed to ensure the home was properly inspected.

She also breached her duty because she rented a mobile home that did not comply with all ordinances, allowed Joseph to move into an unsafe mobile home, failed to warn Joseph of the unsafe condition of his home and failed to warn him of the hidden door, according to the complaint.

In the four-count suit, Michael is seeking a judgment in excess of $200,000, plus costs.

He is represented by Benjamin F. Goldenhersh of Goldenhersh and Goldenhersh in Belleville.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 08-L-521.

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