INDIANAPOLIS – A security company is the final defendant to be dismissed from a class-action lawsuit filed by victims of the deadly 2011 Indiana State Fair stage collapse.
Marion County Superior Court Judge Timothy Oakes granted ESG Security’s motion for summary judgment Monday, effectively dropping it as a defendant. Oakes’ order says he found “no genuine issue of material fact” but did not elaborate.
Stage collapse victims had sued 19 other companies, but the two sides reached a nearly $50M settlement in December.
ESG Security did not take part in that settlement, and the company contended that it wasn’t involved in crucial events leading up to the August 2011 collapse, including weather monitoring and emergency planning, The Indianapolis Star reported (http://indy.st/1Kex4Ls ).
A longtime ESG employee was among the seven people killed when high winds toppled stage rigging onto fans awaiting the start of a concert by country duo Sugarland. Nearly 100 other people were injured.
An ongoing legal case continues over the state’s financial responsibility in the collapse.
The Indiana Supreme Court in July upheld a lower court ruling which found that Indiana would not have to pay any additional damages and decided not to hear an appeal of an Indiana Court of Appeals ruling which upheld the state’s $5 million liability cap.
But in a separate case, the Court of Appeals said in March that Indiana may still be responsible for additional damage claims faced by Mid-America Sound Corp., which supplied materials for the stage. The state’s attorney general’s office has appealed that case, which is scheduled for oral arguments Sept. 23 before the state Supreme Court.
Indiana has paid out $11 million to victims of the collapse, including $5 million under the state’s liability cap and $6 million in public funds freed up by the General Assembly.
Information from: The Indianapolis Star, http://www.indystar.com