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First Lawsuit Filed Jointly by Prominent Reno and Chicago Law Firms in Deadly Amtrak Crash


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Chicago law firm of Corboy & Demetrio and through its co-counsel, the Reno law firm of Bradley, Drendel & Jeanney, has filed  the first lawsuit on behalf of a victim in Friday’s Amtrak crash 70 miles east of Reno, Nevada that killed six people and injured several others and filed an emergency motion for protective order in the case to preserve potential evidence. 

The lawsuit, which was brought in Washoe County, Nevada,  alleges that truck driver Laurence R. Valli and John Davis Trucking Company were negligent in disregarding lowered crossing gates and signals and crashing into the 4th car of the Amtrak train.   

The law firms are seeking an emergency order of protection from a Washoe county judge requiring that all video, audio, electronic data, and physical evidence be preserved and protected for inspection by the lawyers and experts.  According to Tom Demetrio, founding partner of Corboy & Demetrio, “Representatives of the trucking company, Amtrak, and the federal government have had access to this evidence since the tragedy happened on Friday.  Nobody has been involved on behalf of the victims of this crash.  Now we can be involved to protect the rights of those injured and the families of those killed.”

This lawsuit was filed on behalf of victim Alexandra Curtis, 38, of Evanston, Illinois, who was injured in the fiery train crash.  Curtis was an on-duty Amtrak train attendant at the time the truck hit the train.  

Amtrak's California Zephyr was en route from Chicago to Emeryville, Calif., with 204 passengers and 14 crew members on board when the accident happened Friday afternoon.  According to Bill Bradley of  Bradley Drendel & Jeanney, “Early investigation reveals that both Valli and the trucking company have been cited more than a dozen times by various governmental authorities for safety violations over the past 3 years.  This was a tragedy waiting to happen.”  

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