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Airport worker blames Toronto Maple Leafs' employee for injuries

By Molly English-Bowers | Jan 24, 2016

A Fairview Heights man is suing a National Hockey League team over injuries he sustained in a conveyer belt accident as the result of alleged negligence by one of its employees.

Kenneth Osborne filed the suit on Jan. 8 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment Ltd., which owns the Toronto Maple Leafs.

The plaintiff is employed by Jet Aviation at the St. Louis Downtown Airport. On Jan. 17, 2015, he was loading hockey equipment owned by the Toronto Maple Leafs into an aircraft. The plaintiff and his co-workers were using a conveyor belt to load equipment crates into the cargo hold. 

The suit alleges a Toronto Maple Leafs equipment manager repeatedly sped up the belt by adjusting a lever. Further, the plaintiff's co-workers instructed the equipment manager to leave the lever alone, but he did not, the suit states. The plaintiff claims he was subsequently hit by a large equipment crate, causing injury.

The Maple Leaf employee's negligence, and willful and wanton conduct, allegedly caused permanent injury to the plaintiff's right shoulder. The plaintiff expects ongoing medical bills to treat his injury; he has lost wages and expects to lose wages in the future; and he is damaged in his ability to make a living.

The plaintiff seeks at least $50,000 for both counts against the defendant as well as court costs. He is represented by Matthew R. Chapman of Becker, Schroader & Chapman PC of Granite City.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number 16-L-11

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