The Honolulu city council is expected to approve a settlement of $1M for
a couple whose 2-year-old son sustained a serious and permanent brain
injury during an Easter egg hunt eight years ago at Kaimuki Community
Park. Preliminary approval was given last week with a 5-0 vote (four of
the nine members of the Council Executive Matters and Legal Affairs Committee
did not vote on the matter).
According to the plaintiffs, the toddler fell from a 4-foot retaining wall
separating two levels of flat surface areas. The boy became separated
from his grandmother and mother as the crowds of people were directed
to a narrow set of steps to the second level, and either stumbled or was
pushed to the level below. The child hit his head at the base of the wall,
causing severe blunt force trauma, brain damage, and psychological injuries.
To this day, the boy continues to receive medical and therapeutic treatment
for his life-changing injury.
The lawsuit claimed that the city failed to take measures to prevent the
accident or properly warn of the risks associated with the lack of fall
protection around the wall. The city is also accused of failing to provide
better crowd control for the event.
The case is Reiny v. City and County of Honolulu, and the plaintiffs are
represented by Attorney
Michael Cruise of Leavitt, Yamane & Soldner.