A couple in Atlanta is mourning the tragic death of their 19-year-old son after he fell to his death from an apartment complex window.
Now, they are suing the complex for being negligent.
Anthony Hicks II and Desiree Williams are seeking a jury trial and unspecified damages after their son, Anthony Charles Hicks III, fell out of a window in a common area at the Core at Lindbergh apartment complex in the Buckhead neighborhood of Atlanta, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
On July 4, the toddler was walking toward the elevator with his mother when he looked out of the window five stories up and fell to his death, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
According to the wrongful death lawsuit filed in Fulton County State Court, there were no safety features preventing the fall and the boy hit the cement sidewalk below. He later died from his injuries, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
“It never even crossed her mind that the window would be open,” his parents’ attorney, Stephen Apolinsky, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “It had never been open.”
According to the lawsuit, the boy’s parents say the apartment complex was negligent by not having any safety features in the window, as required by building codes, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
In an email to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the apartment complex’s property management company, Matrix Residential, said the apartment community is “deeply saddened by this tragedy.”
“We are taking this situation very seriously and have implemented safety precautions including permanently sealing all similar windows,” Matrix said. “Because the incident is still under investigation, this is all the information we can share at this time.”
The parents’ attorney, Apolinsky, said that following Anthony’s death, the complex installed safety features on the windows, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports, which adheres to the International Building Code, adopted by the state of Georgia.
The Building Code states that an exterior wall window within three feet of the floor must have safety devices if opening the window would allow an object 4 inches in diameter or larger to otherwise pass through, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
The lawsuit states, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “Without any such features, a person approaching the fifth-floor window would be prevented from readily discerning whether it was in a closed state or a fully unprotected state due to the fact it looked essentially the same regardless of whether it was open or shut.”
Apolinsky told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that Anthony’s parents filed the lawsuit in hopes of preventing other families from enduring a similar tragedy, adding, “They’re just trying to get by day by day, but they are still distraught over losing their son.”