Scalding bathwater causes man's death, court documents claim

Kelly Holleran May 24, 2013, 1:49pm

The relative of a recently deceased man has filed suit against the man’s former caretaker after she allegedly left him in scalding bathwater.

According to court documents, the man died from second and third degree burns he sustained during the bath. 

William Morris claims defendant Decresha D. Jenkins was bathing Larry Morris on July 22, 2011. Jenkins turned on the bathwater, then left Morris in the bath, according to the complaint filed in Jefferson County District Court.

“Upon Descresha Jenkins’s return, Mr. Morris was discovered to have been burned by scalding hot water in the bathtub, even though a ‘scald protector’ designed, manufactured and marketed by co-defendant, Cash Acme, had been installed,” the suit states. “Mr. Morris suffered second and third degree burns on over 25 percent of his body surface and subsequently died from said injuries.”

Because of Larry Morris’s death, Williams Morris incurred funeral and burial costs, the complaint says. He also claims he lost Larry Morris’s companionship and society and has suffered mental anguish.

William Morris alleges medical negligence against Jenkins, saying she failed to provide professional care, failed to monitor Larry Morris during his bath, failed to check the bath water to be sure that it was not overly hot and failed to attend to Larry Morris when he showed signs of pain.

He also names Cash Acme as a defendant. Cash Acme had manufactured a scald preventer, which Larry Morris utilized during the bath. However, the scald preventer failed to work as promised, according to the complaint.

In his complaint, William Morris seeks a judgment in excess of the minimum jurisdictional limits of Jefferson County District Court, plus pre- and post-judgment interest, costs and other relief the court deems just.

John Werner of Reaud, Morgan and Quinn in Beaumont will be representing him.

The case has been assigned to Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th District Court.

Case No. D194-356

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