Swing set collapses on teen'' s head, jury orders Las Vegas HOA to pay $20 million

LAS VEGAS (FOX5) –

A jury reached a $20 million verdict after a teen suffered extreme brain injuries from a swing set collapsing on his head at Lamplight Village in northwest Las Vegas.

Lawyers for Carl Thompson, who was 15 years of ages at the time of the injury, argued that the Lamplight Village Homeowners’ Association need to have been examining and keeping play area equipment that could be fatal if left unattended.

The swing set collapsed in 2013. On Thursday, the Lamplight Village play ground had empty poles where the swings used to sit.

“He was playing basketball,” attorney Al Lasso stated. “He sat down on the swing set to send a text message. When he sat down, the 42-pound steel bar fell from a height of 8 feet and crushed his skull.”

Lasso and his co-counsel, Sean Claggett, stated they found the swing sets had actually been proven to be malfunctioning at least 3 times prior to the collapse. They stated they do not believe anybody was hurt in those circumstances.

At trial, they told the jury Lamplight Town had the choice to pay a $150 month-to-month upkeep cost, but declined.

“(Thompson) just happened to be the unfortunate individual that it fell on,” Lasso stated. “These injuries to the brain do not get any much better. In fact, they become worse, and sadly that’s the diagnosis.”

“He’s aiming to finish high school,” Claggett said. “This injury caused him to not finish yet, so he’s still attempting to end up high school.”

“He wishes to go and he wishes to better himself,” Lasso added. “He’s never ever quit.”

Lasso and Claggett stated the fact that Thompson endured was fortunate. They stated they believe a more youthful child would have died from the head injury.

Lawyers for Lamplight Village have actually not yet returned telephone call from FOX5. If they choose to appeal, the case would go to the Nevada Supreme Court.

Lasso said he offered Lamplight Town numerous settlement offers (for “significantly” less than $20 million) in an effort to save his customer from needing to affirm. He said the HOA refused to settle.

“In their eyes, they did nothing wrong,” Lasso said.

“This isn’t the only HOA that’s behaving this way,” Claggett said. “HOAs around the valley are doing the exact same exact thing. So the playground devices isn’t safe anywhere … It could have been anybody.”

Homeowners were expected to address the concern at next Monday night’s HOA conference. Some said they think the discussions will be contentious.

“This will be one interesting conference, don’t you believe?” wrote somebody on the Homeowners of Lamplight Town Facebook page. “Please, let’s all be considerate of others and state our concerns calmly. Bear in mind that board members are homeowners too and we’re all in this together. See you there!”

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