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Ala Moana Center knew about bad railing involved in 2016 fatal fall, suit says

Andrew Gomes
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Security guards at Ala Moana Center watch as a man tends to a section of railing that came loose before two men fell from the top level in October 2016. Lawyers for the victims say in a lawsuit filed today that mall officials were warned about the railing at least four times more than 10 years before the incident.

Lawyers representing families of a young man who was killed and another who was severely injured in a fall at Ala Moana Center in 2016 filed a lawsuit against the mall’s owner today, alleging that mall officials were warned about a railing that failed.

Nicholas “Koa” Freitas died and his best friend Macroy “Macky” Nagato suffered a traumatic brain injury when a railing on the mall’s third-level mauka parking deck gave way. Freitas fell about 30 feet into a basement planter box, and Nagato fell to a second-level walkway. The Roosevelt High School graduates were both 21 years old when the accident occurred.

Attorneys at the Honolulu firm of Cronin Fried Sekiya Kekina and Fairbanks filed the suit on behalf of the Freitas and Nagato families in state Circuit Court.

The lawsuit alleges that Ala Moana’s Chicago-based owner GGP Inc. was warned by a contractor and architect four times in 2005 about the unsafe condition of the railing that failed.

An Ala Moana representative could not be reached for immediate comment.

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