The Palmetto Dunes Property Owners Association should have known a tree in its resort posed a danger before a limb broke off and fell on a 10-year-old boy, resulting in over $285,000 in medical expenses, a lawsuit alleges.
The suit, filed July 28 in Beaufort County Circuit Court, said the son of Christopher and Heather LeCroy, who are residents of Pickens County, was walking with a friend along a leisure path in Palmetto Dunes Resort in April 2014 when a loblolly pine tree limb fell about 50 feet, landing on the child’s buttocks, back and lower portion of the right leg.
The lawsuit claims that “one could clearly see a great deal of evidence of prior limb breakage,” and a “reasonable inspection” of the tree would have caused the Palmetto Dunes Property Owners Association to notice a 20-foot “split” in the trunk of the tree along with other limb breakage “directly above the leisure pedestrian pathway.”
Andrew Schumacher, the association’s chief executive officer, said this week he could not comment on the suit. The attorney for the LeCroys did not immediately respond to multiple requests for comment.
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The child, who is not named in the lawsuit, allegedly suffered a fracture to his right tibia and fibula, as well as post-traumatic stress disorder along with, among other things, “embarrassment, humiliation and mental anguish, and substantial loss of enjoyment of life,” according to the suit.
The boy’s medical expenses have amounted to $285,987 to date, the lawsuit claims. The parents also suffered lost wages totaling $47,237, the suit said.
The suit does not detail the current state of the child’s medical condition, but claims there will be future medical expenses.
The parents are seeking reimbursement of all “actual and related costs” for medical care, along with their lost wages.