WHEELING - A Maryland resident is suing a West Virginia care facility because of the negligence the facility showed toward her now-deceased father.

Emily Kay Goddard Young, on behalf of the late Elwood M. Goddard, filed a suit Dec. 29, in Ohio County against Guardian Elder Care at Wheeling dba Peterson Rehabilitation Hospital and Geriatric Center.

On. Dec. 31, 2004, Goddard was a resident on property owned by Peterson. The suit states Goddard suffered from various ailments, which left him significantly physically weakened and in a wheelchair. Young claims her father was left unattended in a wheelchair with a broken strap.

The suit states Goddard was then "caused to violently fall as a direct and proximate result of a broken strap on his wheelchair, which directly and proximately caused his subsequent death."

The fall caused both internal and external injuries to Goddard, "all of which were permanent and last in nature until his death."

As owner and operator of the property, Young is bringing the suit against Peterson, claiming it was the facility's duty to maintain the property, including inspecting and repairing their property, "specifically the wheelchair with a broken strap."

The suit claims the negligence shown by the facility caused "unreasonable dangerous, hazardous, defective, inadequate and unsafe conditions ... particularly for Elwood M. Goddard, deceased."

Along with negligence, the suit also claims "Peterson owed a duty to its patients ... to provide a wheelchair that was reasonable safe for its intended use and not unreasonable dangerous when put to its reasonable anticipated use."

Young seeks compensatory damages to cover medical expenses, funeral and burial expenses, court fees and other damages to cover her losses.

Judge James P. Mazzone has been assigned to the case.

Ohio Circuit Court case number 06-C-477

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