Family files suit in boy's garage door death

May 13, 2009 3:21:14 PM PDT
The family of a 6-year-old boy who was crushed to death by a garage door on Saturday has filed a wrongful death lawsuit. Attorneys for the family of Dijion Sanders said the garage door should have been equipped with sensors that would have prevented his death. The medical examiner ruled the child's death an accident.

The lawsuit names the garage door's manufacturer, the company that installed it, and the owner of the property where it happened.

"I can't explain to you the hurt I feel every day that my son is not in my arms," said Marshall Sanders, boy's father.

On Saturday, Sanders hugged Dijion good bye before heading to work.

"He said okay, 'Daddy, I'll see you when you get back.' While I was at work, I received a phone call that I would never see my son again," said Sanders.

Dijion was outside playing with his brother Saturday evening when the 6-year old became trapped by a garage door. Their mother rushed outside and tried to perform CPR.

"I keep having flashbacks of seeing my son after we turned him over and his face was blue and his eyes were fixed and dilated," said Angela Washington-Sanders.

Dijion was the youngest of the Sanders' seven children.

The family was staying temporarily at the home of Angela's brother while their house was under construction.

The couple has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against her brother; the owner of the property, Mid-American Door Company, which is believed to have installed the door; and Sears Roebuck and Company, believed to have manufactured the door.

"If that product was manufactured correctly, and the device installed correctly and maintained correctly, then Dijion would be here with us today," said Tim Cavanaugh, attorney.

Cavanaugh says in 1992, the Consumer Product Safety Commission mandated that garage doors have safety sensors and a reverse-opening mechanism to prevent accidents like the one that killed Dijion.

"We would like everyone to be informed about the dangers that exist with garage doors and make sure that there are sensors and that if something got stuck it would automatically go up," said Angela Washington-Sanders.

A spokesperson for sears says their thoughts and prayers are with the family, but cannot comment further pending litigation.

The Sanders are currently in the process of making other living arrangements.


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