Madison - St. Clair Record

Monday, September 16, 2019

Schnuck's says customer injured at East St. Louis store should have case heard in St. Clair Co.

By Ann Maher | Jun 10, 2016

Schnuck Markets will argue its motion to dismiss a personal injury suit based on forum non conveniens in Madison County Circuit Judge William Mudge's court at 1 p.m. on June 16.

Belleville attorney Beth Kamp Veath of Brown and James wrote for Schnuck's that public interest factors favor transfer to St. Clair County, as the alleged incident took place at an East St. Louis store.

"It would be unfair to impose the burden and expense of this litigation on Madison County, which has no connection to the controversy," she wrote.

Lawrence Butler filed suit last December claiming injuries after falling on ice in the store's parking lot.

Butler's attorney, Lanny Darr of Alton, also named Hank's Excavating and Landscaping, which was hired to keep the parking lot clear of ice and snow.

Darr also amended the complaint to add building owners or operators JJGK Realty Corp. and State Street Shopping Center.

The defendants have pending a number of counter claims against one another.

According to Butler's complaint, he was grocery shopping at the Schnuck Market at 2511 E. State St. in East St. Louis on Jan. 27, 2014. After leaving the store, he claims he slipped on ice that had allegedly accumulated due to improper shoveling and plowing or improper chemical treatment of the parking lot.

As a result of fall, the plaintiff allegedly incurred pain and disability, accumulated ongoing medical expenses, and has lost wages and expects to continue to do so in the future.

Butler seeks at least $50,000 from each defendant plus court costs and attorney fees.

Hanks Excavating and Landscaping is represented by Mark Osland of St. Louis.

State Street Shopping Center is represented by Beth Boggs of St. Louis.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 15-L-1551

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