September 06, 2016
Jury selection for the trial that will determine potential payouts for the victims and survivors of a 2013 Center City building collapse begins Tuesday.
The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that the jurors selected will decide whether or not the consolidated lawsuits filed on behalf of the six dead and 13 injured warrant payouts, and if so, who is responsible for paying.
In June 2013, a brick wall that was part of a demolition site collapsed onto the Salvation Army thrift store at 22nd and Market streets.
Two contractors involved in the demolition were found criminally responsible for the incident. Equipment operator Sean Benschop, 44, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in July 2015.
Griffin Campbell, the head contractor, was found guilty of manslaughter and other counts but was acquitted on murder charges in October.
In January, Benschop was sentenced to seven-and-a-half to 15 years in prison, while Campbell was sentenced to 15 to 30 years.
Campbell and Benschop will be defendants in the trial that starts Tuesday, NewsWorks notes, as will building owner Richard Basciano; the architect of the demolition site, Plato Marinakos; and the Salvation Army.
In pretrial hearings, the plaintiffs' lawyers argued the trial may be the only way for the public to hear the whole story of the collapse, according to the Inquirer.
Payments could be in the millions, according to NewsWorks, however, the trial may last several years.