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Family of 16-year-old sues companies after death on summer job

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Vigil to be held for teen who dies after falling from scaffolding at Nashville work site

Family and friends will come together on Wednesday night to remember the life of 16-year-old Gustavo Ramirez, who died after falling from scaffolding at Nashville work site. 

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - They were supposed to be providing training and a job site for Gustavo Ramirez’s summer job before he returned to high school.

Now several companies and individuals are being sued for his death. 

The 16-year-old died on June 23 after falling 120 feet from scaffolding at the construction site for the La Quinta Inn on Interstate Drive.

Following the teen’s death, his family is now suing several people and companies, accusing them of reckless and malicious actions that ultimately led to the teen’s fall.

“(The companies) had the opportunity to prevent this – prevent this death of this 16-year-old boy – and they failed to do that,” said Callie Jennings, an attorney representing the Ramirez family.

News4 Investigates has been reporting on the circumstances surrounding Ramirez’s death, including that the general contractor on the site had no idea he had been hired to the fact that Ramirez has been trained to do work that is prohibited by federal law.

The lawsuit is filed against subcontractor Stover and Son Contractors Inc, main general contractor D.F. Chase and E.Z. Distributing Inc, a company that provided training to Ramirez, as well as several individuals who the family said was responsible for connecting their son to the job.

News4 Investigates has repeatedly reached out to both Stover and Sons as well as E.Z. Distributing and they have either not returned our calls for comment or would not answer questions on the record.

D.F. Chase has repeated said that they were unaware that Stover and Sons had hired Ramirez through a third-party subcontractor called Cortez Plastering, a company that News4 Investigates found is not a licensed company or contractor in Tennessee.

The lawsuit claims that E.Z. Distributing did not cite age requirements for doing scaffolding work in their training.

The suit also claims that the scaffolding itself was unsafe, leading to a three-foot gap in between the scaffolding and the building in which Ramirez ultimately fell through.

The lawsuit does not cite a specific amount the family is seeking.

Related coverage

16-year-old dies after falling from scaffolding at Nashville work site
Construction company: we were unaware teen had been hired by subcontractor
Family of 16-year-old who died on construction site: we are broken
Critics: Certificates show teenager’s training put him in harm’s way
 
 
 
 
 

Chief Investigative Reporter

Jeremy Finley is the chief investigator for News4 Investigates. His reporting has resulted in criminal convictions, legislative hearings before the U.S. Congress, and the payout of more than a million dollars to scam victims.

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