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Published: Friday, 12/16/2011

Father files lawsuit over son's 2009 death

Train hit, killed 15-year-old, injured friend


Nearly two years after a Springfield High School student was killed by a train, the teenager's father filed a lawsuit in Lucas County Common Pleas Court against the train company and its engineer.

Jeffrey Brown filed the complaint as the administrator of the estate for his son, Cody Lynn Brown. The lawsuit alleges wrongful death and negligence.

"On the morning of Dec. 16, 2009, defendant Engineer John Doe was operating the locomotive on Amtrak's Train 29 westbound at the rail crossing at South McCord Rd., near Springfield High School, when he struck Cody Lynn Brown," the lawsuit stated, adding: "Defendant Engineer John Doe had a duty to operate his locomotive in a safe and reasonable manner and to obey all applicable state and federal statutes and regulations."

Young Brown, 15, a freshman, was killed, while his friend, Brianna Mullinger, a 16-year-old sophomore, lost a leg and suffered other injuries when they were struck by an Amtrak train as they attempted to run across the tracks at the McCord Road crossing.

The six-page lawsuit, which asks for damages in excess of $25,000, alleges negligence on behalf of the engineer as well as the train company, which "had a duty to act reasonably in hiring, instructing, supervising, and retaining Defendant Engineer John Doe, and to promulgate and enforce policies, procedures, and rules to ensure that its engineers and locomotives were reasonabl[y] safe."

The case was assigned to Judge Gary Cook.

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