Family of man set on fire to sue gas station
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (WSVN) -- The family of a man who died after being set on fire is heading to court. The family is filing a lawsuit against the gas station where the attack happened on Christmas Day.
A Coral Gables law firm is now representing the family of Darrell Brackett. The lawsuit filed in Miami-Dade County says the 44-year-old man would have never been attacked and lit on fire on Christmas Day if the gas station on Northwest 27th Avenue had provided proper security.
The lawsuit claims that the U-Gas Station was a known haven for drugs and violence, and the gas station did nothing to prevent it, and Brackett was just its latest victim.
Darrell's mother Brigette Brackett spent weeks by her son's side. His skin was so burnt that most of it melted off his body. "For two months I went through total anguish, total hurt," said Brigette.
From his brutal attack in a Miami-Dade gas station on Christmas Day to Valentine's Day, she sat with Darrell at the Ryder Trauma center, in agony.
He could barely move, and he could not speak. Doctors worked desperately to restore Darrell's torched skin.
Darrell's mother said, "This particular week he was alert, eyes wide open, and we were talking to him."
But Darrell Bracket died Friday, Feb. 15, and that would be the last time his mother, grandmother and fiancee would see him.
His mother recalls the late Darrell saying, "He would say, 'Hey, lady, I came to see my favorite girl.' He would call my mom his favorite girl. 'I'm your favorite grandson?' She would say, 'Yeah, you know I love you.' He would say, 'You be cool.'"
As Brackett fought the men who set him on fire, one of his attackers grabbed a can and doused him in gasoline while the other set him on fire. The men then ran away.
The family's attorney is blaming the U-Gas Station owned by Urbieta Oil in a new lawsuit. According to lawyers, in three years the same gas station has had three homicides, six robberies, 20 drug investigations and 57 assaults.
And now Darrell's family is left to suffer from what the family claims was negligent security on the gas station's part. Brigette Brackett also noted that she never even got a condolence in her son's attack.
The law firm said, that just three weeks before Brackett's attack they won more than $5 million in a lawsuit with Urbieta Oil, representing the family of a car wash employee who was murdered in 2009 at another gas station just a few blocks away from where Brackett was set on fire.
The law firm claims the U-Gas has shut down ever since the attack happened on Christmas Day.
Police continue to search for 29-year-old Willie Summersett, Jr. They call him armed and dangerous.
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