Wrongful Death Averted: A Bizarre Story

Toronto, ON – You hear about all kinds of wrongful deaths in the legal profession, and thankfully this wrongful death never happened. However it’s a bizarre story, and representative of some of the lengths to which people will go, in an effort to exact the ultimate act of control over the life of someone else.

And in this case, an attempt to end it prematurely.

In Canada this week, a 60-year-old electrician from the City of Oshawa, located just northeast of Toronto is facing numerous charges after allegedly trying to electrocute his wife of more than 25 years in the shower.

The woman was taking a shower one recent Sunday morning when she complained to her husband about experiencing electric shocks whenever she worked the taps. Her husband explained it away as static electricity. However, the woman later discovered a piece of the drywall missing, in the wall between the master bedroom and the ensuite bathroom. She also discovered wires leading to the plumbing.

Upon confronting her husband, the man turned violent and attacked his wife, choking her until she was almost unconscious, according to police reports. The man later fled and led police on a wild chase at speeds exceeding 100 miles an hour along area highways, before he was finally arrested.

Meanwhile another man, also 60, may not have had any direct link to the most recent construction crane accident in New York City that claimed two lives, but the arrest June 6th of the City’s chief crane inspector only adds to the suspicion that something was terribly wrong that day in New York, and that the deaths of two construction workers were wrongful deaths, and could have been prevented.

There are several unanswered questions surrounding the latest construction crane accident that happened May 30 in New York. Was the rotating plate that failed, sending the crane cab and it’s operator plunging 23 stories to the ground below, improperly repaired when a serious crack was discovered and the plate was taken out of service? Were those responsible for inspecting the weld pressured, in some fashion, to pass it?

Should the compromised plate have been put back into service at all?

Many questions. The fact remains, however, that the current building boom in New York is putting tremendous pressure on the industries and organizations supporting that industry. It has been reported that the City’s corps of inspectors are inadequate in number to handle the current demand, and are being run off their feet. Construction cranes are a hot commodity, and there aren’t enough to go around. When a crane breaks, or is cited for various reasons and taken out of service, the pressure to get that crane back up and running is palpable.

So it was little surprise to some to find out that that New York City’s main man when it comes to inspecting cranes was arrested on suspicion of accepting bribes, allowing cranes to pass inspection. James Delayo, 60, is of course innocent until proven guilty by a court of law. However, it has been reported that he has already admitted to accepting bribes.

Among the charges was an accusation that he had provided a copy of the crane operator’s exam to a crane company, for which an official involved in the case said Mr. Delayo, was paid about $3,000. The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Mr. Delayo also provided the answers. The charges against him include third-degree bribe-receiving and first-degree tampering with public records, both felonies for which he could face up to seven years in prison.

That’s little comfort for the family of Donald C. Yeo, 30, of Monmouth, New Jersey. He was the operator of the doomed crane and would have had no idea regarding the repaired rotator plate that was holding him in the sky, and the allegations of corruption and wrongdoing on the part of various officials on the ground below. He was just doing his job as a construction man, like his father before him, when the plate let go at the weld and he fell 23 stories to his death.

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