Status conference moved in Anderson wrongful death suit

By Amelia Flood | Sep 15, 2009


A status conference in a wrongful death suit against the estate of a convicted felon and the man who allegedly provided the gun used in a young woman's murder has been reset for the second time.

On Tuesday, St. Clair County Circuit Judge Patrick Young reset a conference to Nov. 10 at 9:30 a.m. at the request of plaintiff's attorney William Berry.

Berry represents the parents of Jennifer Anderson, who was found dead July 18, 2005, along with convicted racketeer Thomas Venezia, in a home they shared in Belleville. According to the Belleville Police Department, the 64 year-old Venezia and 21 year-old Anderson both died from shots fired from a .38 caliber revolver. It was ruled a murder-suicide.

Michael and Cynthia Anderson filed suit against Venezia's estate and Robert Staack of Millstadt in 2007.

The Andersons are suing Staack on charges of negligent entrustment for allegedly giving Venezia the gun. According to their complaint, Venezia was ill and suffering from depression at the time of the shootings.

Venezia was convicted on gambling and racketeering charges in 1995 and served more than six years in prison.

There has yet to be a defense answer to the suit since its filing in 2007. A previous status conference in July was postponed as well. At the time, Young had asked attorneys to review their files and to address service, jury demand, discovery and other issues.

Tuesday's status conference had been scheduled for 9:30 a.m.

The Andersons are represented by Berry and Jim Schottle of St. Louis.

The case is St. Clair County case number 07-L-359.

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