CHARLESTON – The widow of a man who was electrocuted on the job is suing over his alleged wrongful death.
Alice Keener, individually and as administrator of the estate of Rocky Allen Keener, filed the suit April 14 in Kanawha Circuit Court against Asplundh Tree Expert Co., Appalachian Power Company and Justin Peck.
On July 31, 2014, Peck was the crew foreman for Asplundh at a tree-removal job in Bickmore. The work crew for this job included the deceased. The afternoon of July 31, Keener climbed a tree, de-limbed and topped it, climbed down from the tree and sat on a tree stump located near a chain link fence on the property, the suit alleges.
However, according to the complaint, when the tree toppled, it did so in an allegedly uncontrollable manner, glanced against the adjacent power lines, caused the power pole to snap and caused the power lines to come into contact with the fence near which Keener was sitting. He was electrocuted, the suit says.
In addition to the counts against Peck and Asplundh, the suit brings a count of negligence against Appalachian Power Company for its alleged negligence in allowing the utility pole to remain in use.
Alice Keener seeks compensatory and punitive damages from all three defendants, pre- and post-judgment interest, court costs, attorney fees and other relief the court deems proper. She also demands a trial by jury. She is represented by Robert V. Berthold Jr. and Robert V. Berthold III of Berthold Law Firm PLLC in Charleston.
Kanawha Circuit Court Case number 16-C-566