The family of Anastasia Bolton has filed a $5 million wrongful death claim in the case of her September 2010 death, when Bolton was hit and killed by a Metrolink Train after apparently falling asleep on the tracks. The same accident also killed Daniel Atkins of Mission Viejo, California, and injured Silvia Lua of Santa Ana, California.
The basis of the suit is that the area where the victims accessed the tracks was not fenced off, and did not have appropriate signage warning of the presence of train tracks. To quote the suit, the city failed “to maintain proper restriction and/or warning to area of high traffic and inherent danger.”
According to Lua, the three had met on the night of the accident to have an adventure of sorts. They began their evening socializing at a bar, although Lua adamantly insists the three of them did not drink there. At that point they wandered around town, trying to contact other friends for a place to stay for the night but failing to do so for assorted reasons. While waiting to get into contact, Bolton began walking near the tracks at the shopping center they had parked at. Lua fell asleep by the tracks due to the late hour, and was awakened by the passing train, suffering moderate injuries (apparently from debris). She further states she couldn’t find her friends when she gathered her senses.
Complicating the suit and contradicting Lua’s claims that the three did not drink, Bolton and Atkins both had an elevated blood alcohol contact at the time of the accident, Bolton with .1 and Atkins with .07.
The police, perhaps consistent with this finding, elected not to file charges in the matter and closed the case, calling it a tragic accident. The city officials with whom the initial claim of premises liability was filed also dismissed the initial claim as having no ground. There is no word on when the next hearing will be held.