Mother Is Suing Minnesota Walmart For Horrific Parking Lot Accident
A woman named Essie McKenzie from Coon Rapids is suing a Walmart store in Fridley, Minnesota over a horrific accident that took place in that store's parking lot. First responders were called to the scene of the Fridley Walmart on August 6 2019 with reports that a van had caught fire and the fire jumped damaging a few other vehicles as well.
Both of McKenzie's daughters were sleeping in their van that caught fire while she was in the store shopping. Her 6-year-old daughter Ty-rah died from her injuries and her other daughter Taraji who was 9 at the time suffered injuries that will leave her physically and emotionally scarred for life.
According to KARE11: "Investigators discovered that the origin of the fire was a hot plate being used by Robert Lino Hipolito, who was camping in the Walmart parking lot with his wife in their minivan. The 72-year-old Hipolito was charged with second-degree manslaughter but eventually pled guilty to two felony counts of negligent fire. He was sentenced to 120 days in jail and three years probation."
McKenzie filed her first lawsuit In 2020 when a Hennepin County judge awarded a $130,000 settlement in a civil case filed on behalf of McKenzie's surviving daughter against Hipolito. Her current lawsuit against Walmart is based on the fact that some stores allow RVs and other vehicles to camp in their parking lot overnight.
"The lawsuit alleges wrongful death, and says by allowing people to camp with no supervision, permit requirements or sanitation, Walmart has maintained dangerous conditions on store grounds." Her current lawsuit is seeking damages of over $75,000.