Boat crash defendant files answer, counterclaim

By Kyla Asbury | Mar 24, 2016

MORGANTOWN – One of the defendants in a lawsuit involving a Memorial Day boat crash has filed an answer and counterclaim.

Steven B. Solomon denied he owned the boat in question and denies he owed a duty to the plaintiffs or that he breached any duty owed to them, according to the March 18 answer and counterclaim.

In his counterclaim, Solomon states that it is alleged that drugs and/or alcohol were involved in the incident which may have contributed to the accident on May 25, 2015, however, individuals other than him supplied the drugs and/or alcohol and that who provided them must be determined through additional discovery.

“In the event it is determined that one or more of the plaintiffs supplied drugs and/or alcohol on May 25, 2015, and that those acts caused or contributed to the accident of May 25, 2015, those individuals are liable for any damages their actions proximately caused,” the counterclaim states.

Furthermore, if it us shown that any of the plaintiffs were contributorily negligent in supplying or otherwise providing alcohol and/or drugs that proximately caused the accident, and should Solomon be found liable to the plaintiffs, which liability he denies, he is entitled to have any award against him abated, reduced or eliminated by contribution from any individuals found liable for their act(s) of supplying drugs and/or alcohol.

Solomon seeks for the complaint against him to be dismissed with prejudice. He is represented by E. Kay Fuller and Kit Mathers of Martin & Seibert.

On May 25, 2015, Brandon Solomon was driving a 25-foot boat on Cheat Lake when it crashed into an embankment injuring 11 and himself.

Brandon Solomon was charged with various misdemeanors.

Some of the passengers filed civil suits against Brandon Solomon and his father, Steven Solomon, who they say owned the boat.

In the initial civil suits, the passengers say Brandon Solomon was under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol when he crashed.

Reid Douglas Bailey, Rachel Anne Coyle, Carly Nicole Della Salla, Michael James Gaudino and Tyler Thomas Geyer filed a lawsuit Dec. 29 in Monongalia Circuit Court against Brandon Solomon and Steven Solomon, alleging permissive use, negligent entrustment, negligent/careless/reckless conduct and prima facie negligence.

The plaintiffs were passengers on the Malibu Wakesetter, which Brandon Solomon allegedly operated at excessive speeds while intoxicated, the complaint states.

The plaintiffs are seeking compensatory and punitive damages. They are being represented by Stephen B. Farmer and Eric M. Hayhurst of Farmer Cline & Campbell.

Another lawsuit was filed in November by Jacob Alexander, who was also an occupant on the boat when it crashed. He made the same claims as the plaintiffs in the other lawsuit.

Alexander is seeking compensatory damages with pre- and post-judgment interest. He is being represented by Harry G. Deitzler of Hill, Peterson, Carper, Bee & Deitzler PLLC.

Monongalia Circuit Court case numbers: 15-C-742, 15-C-822

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Organizations in this Story

Hill, Peterson, Carper, Bee & Deitzler, PLLC Martin and Seibert LC Monongalia Circuit Court

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