Family Sues Over Trespassing Teen's Fatal Hospital Fall

Wrongful death lawsuit claims building's owners didn't do enough to secure the building from outsiders or keep the building in a safe condition

Wednesday, Jul 18, 2012  |  Updated 7:41 PM CDT
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Family Sues Over Teen's Fatal Hospital Fall

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The family of a teen who suffered a fatal fall after sneaking into a vacant hospital building is suing the owners of the building.

Martin Morales-Flores filed a wronful death lawsuit Wednesday after son Jose Morales died after falling two stories through a hole in the floor of the vacant Ravenswood Hospital on July 2.

In the suit, Morales-Flores claims the building's owner, Lycee Francais de Chicago, didn't adequately secure the building from trespassers and failed to keep the building in a safe condition, among other things.

Inspectors from the city’s Department of Buildings inspected the building after the boy fell and determined it hadn’t been securely maintained, an agency spokeswoman said at the time.

The four-count suit claims negligence and a survival action against both Lycee Francais and American Demolition Corporation, which the suit claims was in charge of securing the abandoned building. It seeks an unspecified amount in damages, plus the costs of the suit.

Jose Morales opened a door on the second floor of the boarded-up building at 1931 W. Wilson Ave. and fell through a hole in the floor on about 3:35 a.m. on July 2, authorities said at the time.

Morales, of the 6100 block of West Eddy Avenue, suffered internal injuries and head injuries, authorities said. He was taken in critical condition to Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center where he was pronounced dead at 1 p.m.

Two other boys with him, both 17, weren’t hurt. They all entered through a fire escape.

Ravenswood Hospital has been vacant since the 1990s.

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