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MattCasey

Freedom of the Seas Fatality?

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On 7/29/2019 at 1:41 PM, cruisestuff said:

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Michael Winkleman, the family’s attorney, has challenged a Puerto Rico police report that says Chloe Wiegand’s grandfather dropped the toddler out of a window July 7th when the Freedom of the Seas was docked in Puerto Rico. Winkleman has said Chloe asked her grandfather to lift her up so she could bang on the glass in a children’s play area and that she fell through the window that had inexplicably been left open.

Correct me if I'm wrong here but don't the windows on the pool deck go all the way down to the floor?  If she liked to stand and bang on the glass, why wouldn't she have stood on the pool deck and banged on the glass (just like the picture shows her doing at the ice rink!)?  Why would "she" have asked the grandfather to lift her up where there was a railing in the way and an open window!  While this is a horribly tragic accident, it's sad that many people's first reaction is to find someone else to blame for their own mistakes/actions and try to profit off of the death of a loved one as well.

 

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On 7/7/2019 at 6:43 PM, MattCasey said:

Anyone confirm? Supposedly a small child was being held by a parent/grandparent and slipped and fell several decks.

Thoughts to the family if it's true.

Extremely sad for their loss but also turning into extreme anger you would ever risk a loved ones life and not think about it. 😭

Sure it sounds like just carrying the child to get a better view but everything in my soul tells me to use common sense.

Angers me to think about how easily this could have been avoided.

Bringing life into this world it is also your responsibility to keep them safe! Please everyone out there just a friendly reminder to use common sense and don't do anything unnecessary :100_pray:

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On 8/21/2019 at 2:54 PM, TJ! said:

Extremely sad for their loss but also turning into extreme anger you would ever risk a loved ones life and not think about it. 😭

Sure it sounds like just carrying the child to get a better view but everything in my soul tells me to use common sense.

Angers me to think about how easily this could have been avoided.

Bringing life into this world it is also your responsibility to keep them safe! Please everyone out there just a friendly reminder to use common sense and don't do anything unnecessary :100_pray:

What angers me in this situation is the lawyer getting the family to change the narrative of this horrible preventable accident. I've been following this story on social media and it has sadly created a very different picture of what one would expect to see on a RCCL ship.  Most of those commenting have never been on a Royal Caribbean ship and a good number of them have never been on a cruise.  It's so easy to put the blame on RCCL for the "open window next to the kid's play area."  I find myself being defensive of this cruise line that I have grown fond of.

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11 minutes ago, RatedPG said:

What angers me in this situation is the lawyer getting the family to change the narrative of this horrible preventable accident. I've been following this story on social media and it has sadly created a very different picture of what one would expect to see on a RCCL ship.  Most of those commenting have never been on a Royal Caribbean ship and a good number of them have never been on a cruise.  It's so easy to put the blame on RCCL for the "open window next to the kid's play area."  I find myself being defensive of this cruise line that I have grown fond of.

I hope you post responses "as one very familiar with the ship" to tell them the story is full of errors and to set them straight!

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The recent comments led me to do another web search on subject and I could find no information new or even from anytime in August 2019

I do wish that the final San Juan police investigation report would be made public.  That would answer a lot of questions I believe 

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I took several RC cruises and no children fell out the windows. The window have green/blue tint and are not perfectly clean so baby Chloe grandpa should be easily able to identify closed and open windows as they are clearly identified even on the photos taken on the day of the accident. Was the grandpa drunk, overmedicated and medically impaired on the day of the accident? Normally, we do not have problem to identify open window at our house, work place or any place else. It appears that the grandpa was negligent placing 18 months baby on the window ledge at least his waist height. The 18 months baby is still wobbly can get injured falling inside the room and hitting her head on the table or chair. Unfortunately, she fell outside and the grandpa for unknown reasons could not grab her in time.

I am terribly sorry for her untimely death, but it seems to be a case of the grandpa negligence more than the Royal Caribbean fault. It is a responsibility of the child guardian to make secure his child. There are windows from floor to the ceiling in the Windjammer Café and solarium deck. They are closed on the child/adult level as far as I am concerned. However, some ships have Windjammer Café area window open for cruisers willing to dine al fresco. Again, Royal Caribbean tries to satisfy all cruisers and asks the cruisers to exercise caution to avoid accidents. Keeping eyes shut is not a good method, right?

Above all, I am appalled on the family shifting rapidly to capitalize on the girl' death. And as a prior cruiser, generally I am pleased with the services  RC provides. I am also concerned with the reckless cruisers climbing the walls and suing the RC which in the end will result in RC rising the cruise price for all of us. Let the baby Chloe rest in piece and let us nto allow greedy parents to capitalize on her death. The grandpa screwed up big way!

 

 

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Terrible tragedy that was completely avoidable.  I've sailed a number of ships since and everytime I see an open window on the pool deck I still ask myself how could he not have known?

I can only speculate that the swift moving lawsuit and attorney's actions were an attempt to deflect blame and persuade local authorities from reaching this conclusion.   In doing so they tarnished a great company's name and image and cost them significantly.

A precious life lost that no arrest or homicide case can ever correct.  At the end of the day it's a guilt he'll have to take with him to the grave regardless how the case proceeds.

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26 minutes ago, Ray said:

I am sad for the Family but this grandfather is at fault. I am happy that he was charged because he need to take responsibility. 

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4 minutes ago, Jmccaffrey said:

I am sad for the Family but this grandfather is at fault. I am happy that he was charged because he need to take responsibility. 


WOW!!!! They charged him with NEGLIGENT HOMOCIDE?!?!?  Yes, he was at fault, but that seems like way too much of an overcharge.  Involuntary Manslaughter would have been more appropriate if they really wanted to charge him with something. 
 


 

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4 minutes ago, ChrisK2793 said:


WOW!!!! They charged him with NEGLIGENT HOMOCIDE?!?!?  Yes, he was at fault, but that seems like way too much of an overcharge.  Involuntary Manslaughter would have been more appropriate if they really wanted to charge him with something. 
 


 

No they charged him with negligent manslaughter which seems appropriate. 

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3 minutes ago, ChrisK2793 said:


WOW!!!! They charged him with NEGLIGENT HOMOCIDE?!?!?  Yes, he was at fault, but that seems like way too much of an overcharge.  Involuntary Manslaughter would have been more appropriate if they really wanted to charge him with something. 
 


 

I think that involuntary manslaughter would have been if she had climbed up and fallen to her death while he wasn't looking. But in this case HE LIFTED HER to the window AND let go of her! If he had wanted to kill her, that was a guaranteed way to do it. But the other side of this is that it will be easier to get a jury to acquit him of the charge, because it wasn't his intention (as far as we know) to kill her. The trial is going to be a mess of accusations, unless they settle and he agrees to serve time. It's a very interesting case from many points of view.

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5 minutes ago, CoupleOfCruisers said:

No they charged him with negligent manslaughter which seems appropriate. 


Are you sure?  The article that was linked above says negligent homocide and he was held on $80,000.00 bail which also seems excessive for a grieving grandfather.  It’s not like he’s going to run around murdering other people.

 

 

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He's been charged, that doesn't mean he'll be convicted.  A jury of his peers can very easily choose not to convict based on lack of intent and compassion for his grief.

The other thing these charges mean is that the family's lawsuit against Royal is not likely to go anywhere since the police are clearly placing the blame on the grandfather not the cruise line.

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If someone leaves their infant in a locked car and that child dies in the heat they will likely face charges.  They could be convicted or not.  If convicted they will face sentencing that can take into account the impact that has already occurred to everyone involved.  Some jurisdictions have minimum sentences and in some cases the court process can render a sentence deemed appropriate.  That could be a slap on wrist or incarceration.  

As parents our children are our responsibility.  Sometimes bad things happen that are out of our control.  That's not the case here.  When someone plays a role that results in death regardless if it's their own family or a stranger, it warrants a trial.  An investigator or district attorney should not solely be responsible to decide if that person has suffered enough or the level of guilt involved.  Sometimes a DA might decide there isn't enough evidence and a trial is not warranted.  That's not the case here.  No DA should become a judge and decide the extent of their suffering.  Let the court do that.

In this case he has refused to accept any responsibility.  "Not my fault, someone else left the window open".  That may have a played a factor in deciding to pursue charges since he apparently feels no guilt.  He claims no responsibility and refuses to accept he did anything wrong.  His family has taken the same position resulting in the lawsuit against the company.

If nothing else perhaps the trial will wake them up to the fact that his actions resulted in a loss of life.  

He needs to realize he did this, not the person who opened the window and not the company because they have windows.  

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44 minutes ago, CoupleOfCruisers said:

Yeah I see that, the articles I read called it manslaughter. So honestly I don’t know unless it’s considered the same! 

From NBCNY: 

"Puerto Rico's Justice Department said in a statement that it charged Anello with negligent manslaughter. San Juan Investigations Chamber judge Jimmy Sepúlveda determined cause for the arrest and set bond at $80,000, the Justice Department added. A hearing has been scheduled for Nov. 20."

So, not homicide. Negligent manslaughter sounds about right.

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4 minutes ago, twangster said:

In this case he has refused to accept any responsibility.  "Not my fault, someone else left the window open".  That may have a played a factor in deciding to pursue charges since he apparently feels no guilt.  He claims no responsibility and refuses to accept he did anything wrong.  His family has taken the same position resulting in the lawsuit against the company.

If nothing else perhaps the trial will wake them up to the fact that his actions resulted in a loss of life.  

I agree.  The lawyer making press releases a few days after the tragedy and the parents appearing on the Today show pushing the narrative about the "window in the children's play area", which was "not distinguishable whether is was open or closed" for a grandfather who only wanted to give his granddaughter the chance to "bang the glass" which she loved to "do at hockey games" opened them to more scrutiny.  

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Sorry, but as a grandparent of a 3 and 1 yr old, my heart breaks with this story.

If I was being brutally honest, there probably would have been 2 deaths that night bc if my grandbaby fell out of my arms, you can bet I would have thrown my body out the window with the hopes that she would land on my body and survive.  I could physically and emotionally not be able to live with myself otherwise,

I am not passing judgement on the grandfather, I am just saying that there is no sentence any jury can hand down to him that is worse than the living hell he must endure everyday of his life from the minute he opens his eyes to the minute he closes them.

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36 minutes ago, F1guynz said:

The families lawyer has done a good job with the media as they keep referring to a "Wall of windows" and "childrens play area"

The accident location is near an area for children but is not actually a childrens play area, 

 

To clarify, the area is an area where all passengers can sit.  It is not an area "for children", but an area where families with or without children can be present.  Sometimes people bring food from the Windjammer to sit there.  Sometimes people sit there to escape the sun around the pool.  Sometimes people read a book there. Sometimes those people have children, sometimes they don't.  It's a public area open to everyone.  

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