Handicapped woman's fall at Casa Ole leads to suit

By Marilyn Tennissen | May 7, 2007

A night out for Mexican food turned into more than just "another Casa Ole day" for Mary Kelly, a handicapped woman who is suing the restaurant chain.

Kelly filed a personal injury lawsuit against Casa Ole on May 3 in Jefferson County District Court after a fall two years ago at the restaurant.

According to the plaintiff's original petition, Kelly and her child went to the Casa Ole near Parkdale Mall on May 7, 2005, to eat supper. The suit says Kelly, whose disabilities are not described, used the handicap ramp to access the sidewalk.

"Upon reaching the sidewalk, something caused Mary Kelly to slip. As a result of Mary Kelly's slip, she was knocked unconscious," the petition states. "Upon regaining consciousness, Mary Kelly realized that she was in serious medical trouble."

Emergency personnel were contacted and Kelly was transported to Memorial Hermann Baptist Hospital in Beaumont. The plaintiff says she sustained "tremendous injury" from the fall.

"Mary Kelly's life has dramatically changed as a result of the personal injuries she suffered from the incident at defendant's place of business on May 7, 2005, where she was simply trying to enjoy a good meal," the plaintiff's lawyer wrote.

Casa Ole is negligent because it failed to properly maintain the sidewalk and should have known of the danger, the plaintiff alleges.

Because of Kelly's disabilities, the suit alleges Case Ole of negligence per se for failing to insure the safety of the disabled at its place of business.

The plaintiff is seeking damages for past and future medical expenses, pain and suffering, impairmenet, loss of earning capacity, loss of consortium, loss of household services, disfigurement, mental anguish, fear of future disease or condition, cost of medical monitoring and prevention and any other monetary damages the court may award.

Dallas Barrington of Silsbee is representing the plaintiff.

Court assignment is pending.

Case No. D179-239

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