HUNTINGTON - The son of a woman killed in the Emmons Jr. apartment building fire filed a wrongful death suit on behalf of her estate.

Michael Macera, the son of Mary Biss, filed a suit against Woodlark Properties, Woodlark Enterprises, the building owners, and Alex Vence, the building manager.

Biss, 69, died in a fire Jan. 13, 2007, that killed nine people and injured several others. The fire destroyed the 64-unit Emmons Jr. building, and 32 units in the adjoining Emmons Sr. building were heavily damaged by smoke and water.

According to the lawsuit, the fire started and "copious amounts of smoke and toxic gasses spread over and through the apartment building at an extremely rapid rate of speed."

In the 10-count lawsuit, Macera claims the building was not in compliance with federal, state and local safety codes. The building did not have sprinklers. The suit claims the defendants were negligent by allowing the fire to happen, and did not take the appropriate actions to protect the victims.

The suit says that at the time of her death, Biss was in good health and as a result of her death, her sons, Michael and Steven Macera, were caused to suffer sorrow, mental anguish and solace including losses of society, companionship, comfort, guidance and other advice.

Michael Macera seeks punitive and compensatory damages to cover the treatment and hospitalization of Biss, and her funeral expenses.

Attorney Dwight J. Staples is representing Macera. The case has been assigned to Judge David Pancake.

This is the third suit filed on behalf of victims of the fire. Two suits were filed in February on behalf of five other victims.

Cabell Circuit Court case number 07-C-561

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