28 Dec 2017
- By Bryan Manabat – [email protected] – Variety News Staff
THE parents of a popular cosplay model from China who drowned in the swimming pool at Sea Fun Villa is suing it for wrongful death and negligence. They are seeking damages and demanding a jury trial.
The plaintiffs are Zhenjiang Liu and Hong Mei Hou, and their attorney, David G. Banes, filed their complaint in Superior Court.
The defendants are Island Travel Investments LLC, doing business as Sea Fun Villa, and five unnamed principals/representatives/agents of the villa.
According to the lawsuit, Sea Fun Villa is a “hotel or bed and breakfast” on Saipan.
The lawsuit stated that on Sept. 25, 2017, the plaintiffs’ daughter, cosplay model Dan Liu, popularly known as Liu Yuling or Jovie, and her three companions stayed at Sea Fun Villa and decided to use its swimming pool.
When it started to rain, the wind became stronger, and the water in the pool started moving and circulating, much like a current, the lawsuit stated.
It added that the strong movement of the water pushed Liu away from the edge of the pool into the deeper water while her companions were still holding on at the edge of the pool.
Liu struggled in the water as she was already in the deep part of the pool and her companions could not help her as none of them could swim and the pool was too deep for them, the lawsuit stated.
“One of the companions called for help as there was no lifeguard or safety equipment. The hotel housekeeper came and then called the caretaker. Precious minutes ticked by,” the lawsuit stated.
“The villa’s caretaker came out with a long pole and a male guest pulled Ms. Liu out of the pool.
“After being taken out the water, guests at the villa began cardio-pulmonary resuscitation on Ms. Liu who was unconscious.
“An ambulance arrived and brought Ms. Liu to the hospital. [She] was admitted at the hospital but never regained consciousness. She died the next day, Sept. 26, 2017, due to injuries sustained in the drowning incident,” the lawsuit stated.
Banes said Liu “exercised due care before the incident, and…there was no indication to her that the pool was unreasonably dangerous.”
According to the lawsuit, the “defendants were all aware or should have been aware that the pool was dangerous to its customers who could drown in it. [The] defendants knew or should have known that the pool was dangerous as there were no warning signs indicating the pool’s depth and that the water in the pool was circulating. There was also no lifeguard on duty at the pool. There were no warning signs notifying potential users of the hours that the pool was open for swimmers or that there was no lifeguard on duty.”
Banes said Liu was working in the modeling/fashion business in China and was well known in her industry. “If she had not been killed, her earnings would have increased as she was young, pretty, popular, and skilled in the modeling industry.”
Liu would have continued to support her parents had she not been killed, their lawyer said.
He said prior to Liu’s trip to Saipan, the defendants “agreed to provide hotel accommodations to [her] and her companions, promising a relaxing and peaceful atmosphere that extended to its recreational facilities which included the outdoor pool, for paid monetary compensation.”
Banes said the defendants’ “gross negligence and reckless disregard” of Liu’s safety was “the proximate cause of her death.”
He added, “As a direct and proximate result of the defendants’ conduct, her parents suffered grief, emotional distress and pecuniary loss, including loss of economic benefits.”
As a result of the defendants’ negligence, Banes said the plaintiffs suffered permanent emotional pain, suffering and mental anguish.
He said because of the defendants’ negligence, the plaintiffs also suffered “loss of financial support from the loss of anticipated earnings in the future until their respective deaths for which the defendants are liable in an amount to be proven at trial.”
Banes asked the court for an order awarding Liu’s parents general damages, special and compensatory damages, punitive damages, costs, attorney’s fees, any allowable prejudgment interest, and other relief deemed appropriate.
Source: Marianas Variety : http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/101142-parents-of-cosplay-model-sue-sea-fun-villa