Department store's empty display platform caused man to fall, lawsuit says

By John Suayan, Galveston Bureau | May 30, 2013

HOUSTON - After he allegedly hurt himself at a Marshalls department store in west Houston two years ago, Harris County resident Gerard F. Waller has filed a lawsuit.

Court papers targeting Marmaxx Operating Corp. and The TJX Companies Inc. were filed in Harris County District Court on April 24.

The Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas received the case on May 24.

According to Waller, the subject event occurred at the Marshalls Hedwig Village store on April 25, 2011.

He claims that he was shopping when he fell over an empty display platform "which was just a few inches higher than the floor."

"This empty raised platform was at one time used to display merchandise," the suit says.

Waller asserts the platform was the same color as the floor and contained no warning signs or markings so customers could tell the two apart.

"The raised display platform's color and lack of markings created a condition that was not open and obvious to the defendants' customers," the original petition states.

"Therefore, even though Mr. Waller was using normal care when shopping in the defendants' store, he was still unable to see the display platform."

Waller adds he has experienced "substantial pain and suffering, a disruption of many of his work and personal activities, and permanent disability."

A jury trial is requested.

Attorney B. Edward Williamson of Jackson Walker L.L.P. in Houston is representing the complainant.

Case No. 4:13-CV-1522

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