Jump to content
MattCasey

Freedom of the Seas Fatality?

Recommended Posts

40 minutes ago, Manana Chkadua said:

How many lies Baby Chloe family can perpetuate to get millions from Royal? Although the Wiegand family never claimed that grandpa had any medical condition that would impair his ability to provide care for the toddler, the grandpa in the recent CBS interview claimed he is color blind. He never mention his color blindness until his indictment. Had he be color blind, it should be in his medical records preceding the accident, drivers license and perhaps as an impairment in his IT job. At this point, it is hard to accept his claim of a sudden color blindness as he over and over testifies that he felt breeze and was compelled to try to touch a glass! He knew that something was wrong but still put the girl on the very narrow ledge. She had no chance to keep her balance and he admits to tripping, losing grip or letting one hand to go of her to seek for the window pane. Enough lies and we need justice for Chloe. Her grandpa was reckless and negligent - was he drunk, overdosed on opiates or else?

I have found it interesting how small but important details are emerging in his story.  It's almost like the family and attorney are telling him it wasn't his fault but deep down he knows it was and that guilt and awareness is compelling him to speak now of these little details.

He never should have placed her on that hand railing glass or no glass.  

As people age it is always a challenge for families to reach the point where elderly family need to be told they can't drive a car anymore.  I personally had to swerve around a car on the interstate driving the wrong way towards us at highway speeds.  It was an elderly woman who should have had her driver's license revoked before that point.  She could have killed my whole family.  It's never easy coming to terms with elderly parents reaching the point they can't handle the responsibility they once could.  It makes me wonder if this grandfather is there now.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 12/11/2019 at 9:49 AM, teddy said:

Who here is old enough to remember when Don Henley's "Dirty Laundry" was getting lots of radio time?   This song comes to mind every time I read about this unfortunate incident.

Yep, I even quoted the song in a college English paper... back in the 90’s. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, twangster said:

I have found it interesting how small but important details are emerging in his story.  It's almost like the family and attorney are telling him it wasn't his fault but deep down he knows it was and that guilt and awareness is compelling him to speak now of these little details.

He never should have placed her on that hand railing glass or no glass.  

As people age it is always a challenge for families to reach the point where elderly family need to be told they can't drive a car anymore.  I personally had to swerve around a car on the interstate driving the wrong way towards us at highway speeds.  It was an elderly woman who should have had her driver's license revoked before that point.  She could have killed my whole family.  It's never easy coming to terms with elderly parents reaching the point they can't handle the responsibility they once could.  It makes me wonder if this grandfather is there now.  

The man is 51.... less than 10 years older than me and, I’m guessing, younger than many on this board. I absolutely do not consider 51 to be “elderly” or incapable of taking care of children, unless there are other mental or physiological conditions at play..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, BunnyHutt said:

The man is 51.... less than 10 years older than me and, I’m guessing, younger than many on this board. I absolutely do not consider 51 to be “elderly” or incapable of taking care of children, unless there are other mental or physiological conditions at play..

Everyone ages differently. I worked in health care many years. I'm 67, healthy, work out in the gym 5 days a week, walk over 75 miles a week. I have patients that when I first met them, I guessed they were older than me. They had long medical histories and took many medications. Then their birth dates would show they were sometimes decades younger than myself. Just because he's "only 51" is very relative when it comes to health.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do not consider him elderly at all.  That being said as @Ditchdoc stated he might have many health problems that make him seem older than his age.  

To me this does not play well for the parents in their lawsuit.  My father in law went out on permanent disability at 55 due to major heart issue.  He aged really quickly after that occurred.  As their children with our own children, we were constantly cognizant of his medical restrictions, and took precautions when he was with our children, i.e. making sure he was lifting both our 3 yr old and 1 yr old at the same time.  

My point is the parents knew he had color vision deficiency.  Knowing that fact why would they allow him to take the child to the windows.  Surely, the parents could tell windows were open, thus, why didn't they say, hey Dad....don't pick up Chloe before you make sure the windows are closed.  If he was like my FIL, he would have said a snide remark, such as, I know, I know, I am not that stupid.  My MIL would have chimed into defending my FIL.  However, it would have made him think twice realizing he did have medical shortcomings and these were our children we are trusting him with.  

I do feel for the parents, truly I do, but the more I think about all of their actions, the more I can see the holes.  For example, this maybe the cynic in me, but why this week did they file ?  Why not 2 months ago?  Why the need to tell the world that this week was when she would have turned 2?  It feels as it was orchestrated to play more on the heart strings of those hearing their story.  Nobody shoot me, just it keeps playing in my mind, like I said maybe it is the cynic in me.  Just like they originally wanted to announce their lawsuit at the police dept where the father works until they were told they could not since it was a municipal building and this was a civil lawsuit.  Was this to give the optical illusion that the police dept supports the family?  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As I understand it, the family has always wanted to sue. They just officially filed this week. When I used to work in a law firm (one that didn’t take cases of this magnitude but nonetheless), the attorneys didn’t file suits immediately either. There was a period of talking to a potential client, reviewing their documentation, having the client officially retain us by paying a retainer if needed (some cases weren’t charged retainer by law) and then drafting the complaint and filing in court. Now I am not familiar with Florida laws, and some public opinion has speculated that the family was hoping Royal would settle and pony up money already, before the suit was filed. I don’t know if that’s true. But as I do understand, they had a lawyer even before the child’s funeral and were already talking lawsuit. Grandpa also refused a breathalyzer and the family didn’t talk to authorities at all in Puerto Rico. 

The family also apparently thought nothing of the fact that they violated Royal’s rule of no passenger being allowed to sit on railings. I am still baffled as to why they left this grandfather with the baby if they knew his judgment and vision were so poor that he could drop her out the window. 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Perhaps they are trying to get ahead of the criminal trial in PR. 

If they believe the grandfather has a significant chance of being convicted in that case there may be reason to file this civil case before that occurs.

The grandfather next appears in court in December barring any requests to delay or postpone.  So far no evidence has been presented in his criminal case.  Once evidence begins to flow that can change this civil case including making the parents look like they are way out of line.  By filing now they can possibly escape some scrutiny compared to filing after more facts are known and public knowledge.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, twangster said:

So far no evidence has been presented in his criminal case.  Once evidence begins to flow that can change this civil case including making the parents look like they are way out of line.  By filing now they can possibly escape some scrutiny compared to filing after more facts are known and public knowledge.  

I get that.

Which brings out the cynic, or in this time of yr the Scrooge in me.  The criminal evidence will be become a part of their case for the civil case.  RCL civil lawsuit attorneys will have it in their hands soon enough.  If anything, I think it will hurt their civil case.

Maybe, and I hope this is their intention...they are trying to save the grandfather from jail time, and by bringing light to the civil case, it can help him.

  •  Of course they know whatever happens with the criminal case it will probably impact the civil lawsuit.

I don't know RCL's liability insurance.  However, 10 will get me 20, or in cruising terms, an interior will get me the Grand suite, they have liability insurance just for this reason.  Just like docs have malpractice, and even realtors carry insurance for legal reasons.  The attorneys on each side know the number that the liability insurance will cover.  They will require an NDA.  

  • What this means for RCL passengers, is exactly what everyone has stated...higher costs for RCL to operate which will be passed along to the passengers to absorb their higher liability insurance costs.  

Again, I will also say that you know that both sides of the legal table are doing deep dives, with teams looking at social media.  Don't fool yourselves, employers use FB to background dive potential employees, you don't think the attorneys on each side are not doing this for a multi-million dollar lawsuit?  Google Freedom of the Seas fatality lawsuit.  Guess what pops up as number 3?  This forum does.    You don't think they have someone on their team,  lurking here, well than as a realtor, I have a lovely bridge in Brooklyn I can sell you.  I might have title issues, but trust me I can get it done.  They also did an exclusive with dailymail.com, showing photos, etc.  90% were pro RCL.  RCL had to know about this, and it only helps their case.  This site is loyal to Royal.  Dailymail is based in the UK.  They are not loyal to Royal, some are not cruisers, they are not American for the most part, and even those comments are for Royal.   

Smile for the attorney teams lurking here!  😎

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pretty much everyone on this board knows what the ships are like.  In addition, we surround ourselves with people who have similar interests, and those people tend to think like we do.  

Since I'm off from work and quite handily putting off doing the work around the house I need to do, I spent some time doing Google News searches with various search phrases that I think a person totally ignorant of cruising would use.

Many of the stories on major media websites are very slanted against Royal Caribbean.  Some just throw in subtle pictures of the children's area, others blatantly print quotes like,  "This was an unsafe wall of glass that shouldn't have been there within feet of a children's play area" (https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/family-of-toddler-killed-in-fall-from-ship-sues-cruise-line/2187887/)  There is an interview with the grandfather where he says, "I just want them to fix the boat. Just fix it. Just fix the boat."  (https://www.cbsnews.com/news/cruise-ship-death-salvatore-anello-grandfather-charged-death-of-chloe-wiegand-says-hes-colorblind/)

How about this headline?  'Kids are not supposed to die on cruise ships"?  (https://www.washingtonpost.com/travel/2019/12/11/kids-are-not-supposed-die-cruise-ships-family-toddler-killed-fall-sues-royal-caribbean/)

The lawyer is really going all out to make the public believe the ship is unsafe for toddlers.

I had never cruised until not too long ago.  Up until then, I was 100% ignorant about cruise ships other than my memories of watching "The Love Boat".  Had I seen this story before I actually knew what cruising was like, I bet that my ignorance combined with my being a father would have put me in the "evil cruise ship" side of things until I did some actual research on my own.  Luckily, I am very skeptical of what I see in the media, so I feel that I eventually would have learned the truth. There are so many people out there who take what they see on CNN. MSNBC, FOX, etc as gospel.  They're not going to dig any deeper.

The lawyer may be a sleeze, but he's a smart sleeze.  He's trying to get the public to exonerate the grandfather to pressure RC.
 

_______________________________________________________________

A few of the numerous Google News searches I did:

https://www.google.com/search?q=baby+dropped+from+cruise+ship&rlz=1C1AJZK_enUS807US807&sxsrf=ACYBGNTKJg7MM2Xlca_aDV1_fJTSMBd3ZQ:1576260090970&source=lnms&tbm=nws&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjWqq62mrPmAhWQuVkKHZ7vB7kQ_AUoAXoECAsQAw&biw=1920&bih=937

 

https://www.google.com/search?q=freedom+of+seas+baby+death&rlz=1C1AJZK_enUS807US807&sxsrf=ACYBGNT6cg-inJO9SJ-WXQakYeMaSRU1ag:1576258624138&source=lnms&tbm=nws&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiisfb6lLPmAhVwU98KHSOwAU8Q_AUoAXoECA4QAw&biw=1920&bih=937

 

https://www.google.com/search?rlz=1C1AJZK_enUS807US807&biw=1920&bih=937&tbm=nws&sxsrf=ACYBGNQPVd2HN9bf4DzL3ECJps8c5RD3IA%3A1576258643276&ei=U8zzXc60EOSMggeEt4KoDg&q=toddler+dropped+from+ship&oq=toddler+dropped+from+ship&gs_l=psy-ab.3...1693956.1699440.0.1699875.29.26.2.1.1.0.219.2366.18j4j2.24.0....0...1c.1.64.psy-ab..3.11.805...0j0i131k1j0i3k1j33i299k1.0.VuSJ2YsVUY4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Pima1988 said:

I do not consider him elderly at all.  That being said as @Ditchdoc stated he might have many health problems that make him seem older than his age.  

At the time this happened, it was reported that investigators where looking into medical records of the child or "possible" medical records of the child...not sure how it was stated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, teddy said:

The lawyer may be a sleeze, but he's a smart sleeze.  He's trying to get the public to exonerate the grandfather to pressure RC.

The court of public opinion doesn't matter with respect to the outcome in a court of law.   However with his approach he will at some point reach the point of diminishing returns.  

 With each outrageous claim which are aimed at getting Royal to settle out of court for lots of $$$$$$$, he is damaging his own likelihood of a favorable $$$$$$ outcome.   Royal has decided not to settle so far, but each of his claims can be explored and prepared to defend.  He's running out of bullets and sooner or later the public will tire of his rhetoric.  He can only get so many slots on fake news shows like the Today show.  At some point they won't even let him come back.  His claims will fall to page 49 of a 49 page newspaper.

Already he has tried many angles and may have shot his load.  He's done so much damage already, why should Royal settle now?  More outrageous lies aren't going to incur that much more brand damage compared to what he has already accomplished and there is no walking that damage back.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There has been much discussion  of this matter, but we still have not seen the real evidence or heard any particulars from the investigation. They filed charges, and held a preliminary hearing but no details were released. I wonder what more law enforcement  knows about this than has been made public. They will prosecute based on what they can legally  prove. I can't  help but think there is additional circumstantial or anecdotal evidence  that they can't prove beyond a reasonable doubt. Perhaps  I can be a skeptic, but I always believe there is more to the story.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Ogilthorpe said:

There has been much discussion  of this matter, but we still have not seen the real evidence or heard any particulars from the investigation. They filed charges, and held a preliminary hearing but no details were released. I wonder what more law enforcement  knows about this than has been made public. They will prosecute based on what they can legally  prove. I can't  help but think there is additional circumstantial or anecdotal evidence  that they can't prove beyond a reasonable doubt. Perhaps  I can be a skeptic, but I always believe there is more to the story.

See my post on page 14 of this thread.  The security video was seen in court by prosecutors, the defense team, ABC, and NBC.  The news summary of the video, if accurate, indicates Mr Anello could be in BIG trouble...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, BunnyHutt said:

The man is 51.... less than 10 years older than me and, I’m guessing, younger than many on this board. I absolutely do not consider 51 to be “elderly” or incapable of taking care of children, unless there are other mental or physiological conditions at play..

Exactly ..... I'm 57 and can still hang with the young whippersnappers 😂.  To me, elderly is 70+.  At least of the age when you can collect Social Security, NOT when AARP hounds you with mailers on a daily basis.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Manana Chkadua said:

was he drunk, overdosed on opiates or else?

I just saw a very moving video of the first news interview with the grandfather, https://www.cnn.com/videos/us/2019/11/26/grandfather-toddler-puerto-rico-cruise-ship-death-interview-mh-orig.cnn   CBS seems to be taking a different view from NBC. Added to this is the fact I read somewhere that the grandfather refused a breathalyzer test. . . . although if he uses an inhaler for respiratory illness, he may have justifiably feared a false positive test.

I don't blame Royal, and I sure don't envy that poor family. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After reading the description  of the video again( Thank you @YOLO ),  I can't  help but wonder if the grandfather  had such profound  color blindness that he can't  distinguish  between clear and shaded, what motivated him to lead the child accross the room to the one open window? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, Ogilthorpe said:

After reading the description  of the video again( Thank you @YOLO ),  I can't  help but wonder if the grandfather  had such profound  color blindness that he can't  distinguish  between clear and shaded, what motivated him to lead the child accross the room to the one open window? 

I would think that at some point between him leaning over and picking up the child, he had to have known about the glass! If there had been glass/a closed window, he would’ve bumped his head or seen his reflection or the baby would’ve bumped her head. (And likely been fine today, even!) None of that happened so how can he and the parents keep claiming he thought it was glass? 

And they need to cut the hockey excuse too. It’s not a hockey rink. There is no ice. Do they really think “oh but she does it at hockey games” is a viable defense in court? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, WoodsCommaElle said:

And they need to cut the hockey excuse too. It’s not a hockey rink. There is no ice. Do they really think “oh but she does it at hockey games” is a viable defense in court? 

I've been to hockey games, people bang on the glass as the play on the ice evolves.  Players in front of you are trying to get control of the puck right against the boards so people bang on the glass.

I've never anywhere in life outside of a hockey arena just walked up to glass and started banging on it as some sort of involuntary hockey reflex.  "See glass must bang".  It makes no sense.

On a ship no one is on the other side of the glass.  There is no one to bang at.   There is no reason to just randomly bang on glass.  She was at floor level, he stated that.  "Lets bang on the glass for no reason but first I must lift you up".  It makes zero sense.  It's an excuse.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There seems to be a lot of smoke and mirrors being used for excuses in an effort to place blame.

I know much of this has been gone over or commented on before .

I have looked out these very same/type of windows before on several occasions.  There is a tint to them that even from a distance, its pretty easy to tell if one is open or not. It might be a bit more difficult for someone that is color blind but still, an open window would be brighter and a lighter shade than a closed window. Then there are other senses. Near the water there is often a breeze, a slight difference in temperature near an open window compared to the sun coming through the glass of a closed window. There are smells and sounds that are more pronounced at an open window compared to a close one. Sight, sound, hearing, touch, smell ... they all come into play. Then there is the psychological knowledge and experience of ones surrounding. You know where you are. You realize you are at a considerable height. A responsible adult would take this into consideration where a child might not as in the case of Eric Clapton's son who went out a 50 story window not realizing the danger.

Pretty much any but the most obtuse adult would sense and understand the danger in this situation.

It is somewhat a natural tendency at these windows to want to lean forward over the railing for a "better" view. Many people just want to see the  ground or water below. The want to see up and down the length of the ship. They want some perspective, to they lean out a bit, look down, look left and right, think 'wow!' to themselves and move on.

Hanging on to a child can be tricky business. Add that they do not necessarily understand the danger even being a few feet off the ground. I've held kids and dogs that just what to jump out of your arms and it can be a struggle to hang onto them. They don't understand that even falling 3 or 4 feet could hurt. Add that clothing can some times complicate the issue as it slides around the body making the job of holding on them even more of a challenge.

Put all of this together. An adult that exercises poor judgement, has a child in his arms, goes to look out the window, probably leans forward a bit, the child thinks its a grand adventure, wiggle or tries jumps out of his arms, the adult looses their grip, potentially complicated by loose clothing or slippery skin due to sweat or sun screen oils and possibly physical limitations of the adult.

Disaster.

Something along these lines is the most probable scenario.

No matter how many signs you put up or safety precautions you take or legislate (and there are probably a million of them that pertain to building and running a cruise ship), you can not keep everyone absolutely safe all the time, especially if they use poor judgement to begin with.

Does all this make the cruise line responsible? No doubt there are a few cases where negligence of the cruise line is a factor.  I personally do not think this is one of them.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, twangster said:

I've never anywhere in life outside of a hockey arena just walked up to glass and started banging on it as some sort of involuntary hockey reflex.  "See glass must bang".  It makes no sense.

The lawyer seems to be using this logic a lot.  About the railings he said that without warning signs they were an invitation for people to "sit on them, do things on them".  "See railing must sit"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, twangster said:

I've been to hockey games, people bang on the glass as the play on the ice evolves.  Players in front of you are trying to get control of the puck right against the boards so people bang on the glass.

I've never anywhere in life outside of a hockey arena just walked up to glass and started banging on it as some sort of involuntary hockey reflex.  "See glass must bang".  It makes no sense.

On a ship no one is on the other side of the glass.  There is no one to bang at.   There is no reason to just randomly bang on glass.  She was at floor level, he stated that.  "Lets bang on the glass for no reason but first I must lift you up".  It makes zero sense.  It's an excuse.  

I am a hockey fan as well. The arena I go to actually doesn’t allow fans to bang on the glass regardless of how old they are, go figure. I have seen some ushers enforce the rule and go have a word with people who are doing it. And glass at hockey as we know can pop out at any time. I’m sure if Chloe had been on land and glass had popped out and hit her the parents would have sued as well. 

Just because she behaved one way at home doesn’t mean her behavior is OK everywhere. It’s too bad she’s dead because her parents and grandfather believed in indulging her a little too much. I’m not saying that she at 18 months old should’ve understood she can’t do that because that would be absurd. I’m saying that maybe the adults whose care she was in should have better thought that there is a time and a place for everything and that you can’t just give in every time you think the baby wants to do something they don’t need to do. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not a lawyer but I found this on this site: https://legaldictionary.net/negligent-homicide/

image.thumb.png.f5634eeb2b838a5dfb98e3c4cfc350f0.png

It's becoming clear why they're pushing the narrative about the grandfather's colorblindness and the "I thought there was glass" angle. It will be their defense against Element #1 saying "he wasn't aware of the risks..."

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The video will be a critical piece of evidence.  I wonder how hard they will try to get it thrown out.  They may try to argue it violated their privacy or some other improper use they didn't agree to or under some Puerto Rico law they can't use surveillance cameras so the video should not be allowed into evidence. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...